Second Term

Obama Calls for Investment in Middle Class

Susan Walsh/AP

President Barack Obama speaks about the economy, Wednesday, July 24, 2013, at Knox College in Galesburg, Ill.

Speaking at Knox College in Illinois, where he gave his first major speech as a senator in 2005, President Obama called for renewed investment in the middle class—and took some shots at congressional Republicans. Saying that growing inequality was both “morally wrong” and endangering the economic recovery, Obama gave a preview of his goals for his second term, including renewed investment in manufacturing and infrastructure, guaranteeing preschool education, and lowering barriers to owning a home. Though he praised some GOP senators for working with Democrats on immigration, he attacked the House for focusing on “phony scandals” and promised to use his executive authority to push his agenda.