President Barack Obama told reporters on Wednesday that he will make sure the United States “looks out” for American workers when it comes to the “disappearing” American worker.
Speaking at a press conference at the White House, Obama said that if Americans want to be proud of the country they live in, they need to look out for their families.
“We are not going to take away your right to go to work or your right for a family to support you,” Obama said, “but if you want to live your life as an American, look out, you’ve got to look for work, you have to look to your children and grandchildren, and you’ve gotta look out and you’re not going back into a world where you don’t have a job.”
The president also addressed the issue of whether he would support a $15 minimum wage, saying he would “look at it in the context of the context” in which it exists.
He also said that he is “not a fan” of raising the federal minimum wage and is concerned that it could cause unemployment.
Obama said that the federal government would provide incentives for businesses to create jobs that benefit all Americans.
“So if I’m going to be president and I want to make sure that you get a raise, I’ll look at it with a full-spectrum lens,” he said.
“The reason that we need to be doing something is because when a family is making $25,000, $30,000 or $40,000 a year, we need people to look around, to be part of the economy,” Obama continued.
“So when we look at the federal budget, we can’t take away from anybody else’s pay.”
Obama also defended his predecessor George W. Bush’s policies on immigration and poverty.
He said that “the reason that I didn’t go after it is because I was focused on the deficit.”
The White House declined to provide additional details on what Obama would do to tackle the poverty issue.
The president said that his focus is “on the middle class, on the poor, on those who are struggling” and not the “poor and people who are living in poverty.”
Obama made the remarks in response to a question about what he will do about the “underclass” that is “a large and growing segment of the population.”
The former president has been a frequent critic of Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border to keep out immigrants who are here illegally.
“I’m not going anywhere,” he told reporters.
“I’m going there.
We’re going to build it.
We have a wall, we have people coming here illegally, we’re going there and we’re gonna make sure they’re treated fairly.
And I will make no apologies for it.
And we’re not looking for people who come into this country and try to get into this economy.
We are going to keep it together.”