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STUDENT NEWS

President Obama Unveils Details of Jobs Plan

Aired September 9, 2011 - 04:00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: I`ve got a special message for our friends in Beloit, Kansas: Fridays are awesome.

That`s right, it`s the last day of the school week here on CNN Student News. My name is Carl Azuz.

First up, President Obama`s new jobs plan. Last night, the president unveiled the details of his plan to put more Americans back to work in a speech to both houses of Congress.

Mr. Obama`s proposal, the cost of which could top $400 billion comes as the nation`s unemployment rate remains stuck at around 9 percent. So many folks are eager to hear the president`s ideas. Here`s some of what he had to say.

BARACK OBAMA, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: The purpose of the American Jobs Act is simple: to put more people back to work and more money in the pockets of those who are working. It will create more jobs for construction workers, more jobs for teachers, more jobs for veterans, and more jobs for the long-term unemployed.

It will provide.

(APPLAUSE)

OBAMA: . it will provide a tax break for companies who hire new workers, and it will cut payroll taxes in half for every working American and every small business.

(APPLAUSE);

OBAMA: It will provide a jolt to an economy that has stalled, and give companies confidence that if they invest and if they hire, there will be customers for their products and services.

AZUZ: Now, keep in mind, this is the president`s plan, and it still needs to be approved by Congress. And some members of Congress have been critical of the government spending more money.

The top ranking Senate Republican says he considers this another attempt at policies that have already been tried and don`t work.

SEN. MITCH MCCONNELL: If government spending were the answer, we`d be in the middle of a boom right now. We`ve been on a spending spree over the last two years that`s increased our debt by 35 percent. We`ve lost 1.7 million jobs since the last stimulus.

AZUZ: Job creation was one of many topics covered Wednesday night at the Republican Presidential Debate in Simi Valley, California. Eight candidates faced off on a range of issues, including everything from Social Security to health care reform.

The debate was one of several that will take place by the end of the year. The next one is coming up on Monday in Tampa, Florida. You can tune in to watch that live on CNN at 8:00 p.m. Eastern.

We told you yesterday how wildfires are raging across Texas. And we spoke with a woman there who lost her home to the fires.

Now a different part of the center is also facing disaster. What`s left of Tropical Storm Lee has moved across the northeastern U.S., triggering some of the worst flooding the area has ever seen. Flash flood warnings were in place Thursday from Washington all the way to western New England. Tens of thousands of people have been told to leave their homes, and at least three people have died.

This Sunday marks the 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks that took place on September 11th, 2001. It was a series of events that claimed the lives of nearly 3,000 people and changed America as we knew it.

I was working here at CNN that day. It was a day unlike any other. This is piece I put together earlier on what I and my coworkers saw, as we watched history unfold.

It all started at 8:45 on a clear Tuesday morning. We had a live camera up on what looked like a smoking slash across one of the World Trade Center towers. A passenger plane had flown into it, and I remember some of us here at CNN thinking this was some sort of freak event.

Then a second plane flew into the other tower. That was at 9:03 am, and at that point, there was this deepening dread in everyone. Something was wrong in a way we`d never seen before. Airports, bridges, tunnels in New York and New Jersey shut down.

30 minutes, President George W. Bush said we were under an apparent terrorist attack. And minutes after that, every airport in the country was closed. That had never happened before. It wasn`t over, though.

At 9:43 am, a third passenger jet crashed into the Pentagon. Dark smoke rolled up from that part of that huge building. All eyes and many cameras were on that and the two burning towers in New York. And as all of us watched at 10:05, one of those towers gave way where it was smoking, the top part crushing down on the rest of it, and sending up debris and boiling gray clouds.

Five minutes later, part of the Pentagon collapsed, and a fourth hijacked jet crashed in a rural part of Pennsylvania. The White House, the United Nations, the State and Justice Departments, the World Bank, all evacuated. America-bound Atlantic flights were rerouted to Canada. And the second Trade Center tower came down at 10:28.

So many closings, evacuations, shutdowns. Except for emergency response teams -- the heroes of 9/11 -- the country virtually stopped what it was doing and gathered around TV screens. The president appeared just after 1:00 p.m., and asked Americans to pray. And there wasn`t much else we could do.

The destruction was more or less done around 10:30. It was less than two hours from the first crash.

But the change it inflicted was immeasurable. More Americans were killed on September 11, 2001, than on the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941. And when President Bush addressed the nation that night at 8:30, his tone was one of sympathy, resolve and warning to anyone who`d planned or supported the attacks.

GEORGE W. BUSH, FORMER PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: We will make no distinction between the terrorists who committed these acts and those who harbor them.

AZUZ: In the difficult days that followed, we learned that the Al Qaida terrorist group, led by Osama bin Laden, was responsible for all of this. And America`s attention and anger turned to Afghanistan, whose Taliban leaders were giving Al Qaida a safe place to live and operate.

We`d been talking about 9/11 on our blog at cnnstudentnews.com. I asked why you think it`s important to remember this date on the 10th anniversary of the attacks.

Laramey writes, "It`s important to remember because of the suffering we went through on that day. We now have a greater appreciation for life and all of the promise it holds.

Brandon visited New York last year and saw Ground Zero. He says he has a new connection to the event, and realizes how great this nation is to be able to overcome such a tragedy.

Hillary suggests that everyone can be involved in remembering 9/11 by giving respect to the military, veterans and the American flag. Everyday people are fighting for your freedom. Sometimes at a large cost.

From Samuel: When we got attacked, America did not fall apart, we did the opposite of what the terrorists thought. We should still remember the fallen firefighters and medics who helped saved many people.

And from Haley, to carry on into the future, we have to remind ourselves of the past. Good or bad, we can`t pretend it never happened.

One place where people are remembering what happened 10 years ago, and honoring those lost, is the 9/11 Memorial and Museum. It`ll be dedicated Sunday in New York at the site where the twin towers once stood.

CNN`s Becky Anderson recently toured the memorial, and shows us the transformation.

MICHAEL ARAD, ARCHITECTURE, WTC MEMORIAL: These waterfalls are where the towers once stood. In fact, the towers were 212 feet across, and if you measure the distance of this tree on one side of the pool to that tree on the other, it`s exactly 212 feet across. As we standing here, we`re actually walking within the South Tower footprint.

And we can see the names of the people who perished here in the South Tower on the South Pool. And the names of those who perished at the North Tower are inscribed at the North Pool.

BECKY ANDERSON, CNN REPORTER: And the water?

ARAD: The water, the water is -- does such an incredible job in this design. When you see these voids without the waterfalls, they have such a hard starkness to them. As you see these streams of water, they come over that weir and form individual streams. And the clarity of each stream seems to hold itself about halfway down. And then that dissipates.

And I think that speaks to this notion of both individual and collective loss, the way, out of these many streams, you get this one continuous tapestry of water that rings these voids. And I think what we saw that day was a sense of individual loss, but there`s also this collective loss.

AZUZ: Before we go, in addition to being the anniversary of the attacks, Sunday is also the annual 9/11 day of service and remembrance. It`s a day when many people volunteer their time, do good deeds and donate to charities.

To find out how you can make a difference, visit our website, cnnstudentnews.com. Click on the "Impact Your World" link. You`ll find it in the box called "In the Spotlight" -- and, again, that address is cnnstudentnews.com.

That`ll do it for this edition of CNN Student News. We thank you for spending part of your Friday with us, and we look forward to seeing you next week.

END