Obama: 'Impossible not to be confident'

Feb. 19, 2011 at 6:00 AM
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WASHINGTON, Feb. 19 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama said Saturday young students and entrepreneurs he has met make it "impossible not to be confident about America."

In his weekly radio and Internet address -- recorded Friday while he was in Portland, Ore., for a tour of Intel Corp. -- the president said highly skilled assembly line technicians at Intel "aren't just manufacturing high-tech computer chips. They're showing us how America will win the future."

Obama said Intel has "invested, built and hired in America" during a time when global competition has become more intense.

"Three-quarters of Intel's products are made by American workers," he said. "And as the company expands operations in Oregon and builds a new plant in Arizona, it plans to hire another 4,000 people this year."

The president said companies like Intel "are proving that we can compete -- that instead of just being a nation that buys what's made overseas, we can make things in America and sell them around the globe."

Repeating a theme he has sounded with regularity since his State of the Union address last month, Obama said success in global competition will require the United States to become "the best place on Earth to do business." He said the country must improve math and science education so companies can "hire American workers with the skills that fit their needs."

Describing some Oregon high school students he met during his visit, the president said it was "hard not be inspired" by their abilities.

"And it's impossible not to be confident about America," he said.

"All across America, there are innovators and entrepreneurs who are trying to start the next Intel, or just get a small business of their own off the ground," Obama said.

"The truth is, we have everything we need to compete: bold entrepreneurs, bright new ideas, and world-class colleges and universities," he said.

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