President Barack Obama pushed for a higher minimum wage at a re-opened manufacturing plant Wednesday because he says Americans who work full time should not be in poverty.
The president followed up his call for the increase from $7.25 to $9 an hour in Tuesday night's State of the Union address with a trip to North Carolina, attempting to reach voters outside Washington on the plan
Canadian-based Linamar Corp. opened a former Volvo plant in Asheville that had gone dark and rehired some of its workers. Obama touted it as an example of America attracting jobs from overseas.
He says the key to reviving America's economy is to bring more jobs to the United States, give Americans the skills they need to perform them and provide those workers with a decent living.
"There's no magic bullet here, it's just some common sense stuff. People still have to work hard," he said, arguing that just a few structural changes could have an outsize impact. He said he needs Congress to help pass his initiatives.
"It's not a Democratic thing or a Republican thing," Obama said. "Our job as Americans is to restore that basic bargain that says if you work hard, if you meet your responsibilities, you can get ahead."
"If you work full time, you shouldn't be in poverty," Obama said to applause.
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