- The Washington Times - Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Trying to build momentum on his State of the Union address, President Obama is traveling Wednesday to North Carolina to outline his $1 billion plan to boost U.S. manufacturing.

Mr. Obama will visit Linamar, a Canadian-owned auto-parts factory in Asheville, N.C., to discuss his proposal to create a network of 15 manufacturing “innovation institutes” nationwide.

In addition to his plan that would require congressional approval, the president is taking executive action to launch three of the new institutes as partnerships with businesses, universities and community colleges.

In his annual address to Congress Tuesday night, Mr. Obama emphasized programs that he said will help the middle class, including a $50 billion plan for rebuilding bridges and an ambitious expansion of early-childhood learning services. 

“President Obama is committed to making America a magnet for jobs and manufacturing so we continue to build things the rest of the world buys,” the White House said in a statement Wednesday. “After shedding jobs for more than 10 years, our manufacturers have added about 500,000 over the past three.

“Manufacturing production has grown since the end of the recession at its fastest pace in over a decade. The President’s plan builds on that momentum by investing in American manufacturing,” the White House added.

Mr. Obama also wants to end to tax breaks for companies that ship jobs overseas, make permanent the research and development tax credit and lower the tax rate for manufacturers to 25 percent.

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