“Statistics show not only that our levels of income inequality rank near countries like Jamaica and Argentina, but that it is harder today for a child born here in America to improve her station in life than it is for children in most of our wealthy allies, countries like Canada or Germany or France,” he claimed. “They have greater mobility than we do, not less.”
Oddly enough, Obama invoked free-market champion Adam Smith to make his case for more government interference in the economy.
“Government can’t stand on the sidelines in our efforts because government is us,” he said. “It can and should reflect our deepest values and commitments. If we refocus our energies on building an economy that grows for everybody and gives every child in this country a fair chance at success, then I remain confident that the future still looks brighter than the past and that the best days for this country we love are still ahead.”
The president promised to spend the rest of his term working to shrink what he called the income and opportunity gap between rich and poor.
Obama focused on favorite liberal ideas like increasing the minimum wage, increased education funding, defending food stamp and unemployment compensation and, The Blaze said, "standing with labor unions."
“It’s well past the time to raise a minimum wage that in real terms right now is below where it was when Harry Truman was in office,” he said to applause.
Targeting favorite liberal constituent groups, Obama called for more aggressive enforcement of collective bargaining laws, and laws providing more legal recourse for women and the LGBT community.
The president also cited the pope in his attack on free-market capitalism.
“Some of you may have seen just last week the pope himself spoke about this at eloquent length. How can it be, he wrote, that it’s not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points? But this increasing inequality is most pronounced in our country. And it challenges the very essence of who we are as a people," he said.
Conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh skewered Obama for his comments.
"This guy just can't wait to rip this country apart. He just can't wait. Every day, whenever there's an opportunity to criticize this country, he's the first in line. And that is just an outright falsehood," Limbaugh said.
Republicans, The Blaze said, responded by citing Census data that shows 6.7 million Americans have fallen into poverty during the Obama administration.
"As of 2012,"The Blaze added, "there was a total of 46.5 million Americans living in poverty, according to the Census Bureau information."
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