In a speech at the AFL-CIO's Building and Construction Trades Department, President Obama called out Republicans in Congress for refusing to invest in "nation-bulding at home" to improve the country's infrastructure and create jobs.
From prepared remarks:
[O]ver the last year, I’ve sent Congress a whole series of jobs bills that would have put your members back to work. But time after time, Republicans have gotten together and said “no.” I sent them a jobs bill that would have put hundreds of thousands of construction workers back to work repairing our roads, bridges, schools and transit systems, along with saving the jobs of cops, teachers, and firefighters, and creating a new tax cut for businesses. They said “no.” Then, I sent them just the part of that bill that would have created those construction jobs. They said “no.” And we’re seeing it again right now. As we speak, House Republicans are refusing to pass a bipartisan bill that could guarantee work for millions of construction workers.
In the absence of congressional action, Obama cited actions his administration is taking to get construction projects off the ground faster. The president also attacked Republicans' opposition to unions.
And what’s more, they’ve also set their sights on dismantling unions like yours. After all you’ve done to build and protect the middle class, they’re saying you’re responsible for the problems facing the middle class. Somehow that makes sense to them.
Obama's speech also tapped into his more general campaign theme that America is not a “you’re on your own” society but one that works together.