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Obama: America 'Can Do Better'

"A plan to put people to work rebuilding America."

4:18 PM, Mar 29, 2013 • By DANIEL HALPER
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At a speech today in Miami, President Obama urged America to "do better."

"We still have all kinds of deferred maintenance.  We still have too many ports that aren’t equipped for today’s world commerce.  We’ve still got too many rail lines that are too slow and clogged up.  We’ve still got too many roads that are in disrepair, too many bridges that aren’t safe," said the president.

"We don’t have to accept that for America.  We can do better. We can build better.  And in a time of tight budgets, we’ve got to do it in a way that makes sure taxpayer dollars are spent wisely."

Obama announced today his plan. "I’m expanding on a proposal I made in the State of the Union.  I’m calling it a Partnership to Rebuild America.  It’s a partnership with the private sector that creates jobs upgrading what our businesses need most -– modern ports to move our goods; modern pipelines to withstand a storm; modern schools worthy of our children," he said.

During the same speech, Obama took the time to remind the Miami audience that his hometown basketball team recently beat theirs--and got booed. According to the official White House transcript:

THE PRESIDENT: Now, before we get started, I've got to get into a sticky subject right off the bat.  I know you guys aren’t happy with my Chicago Bulls.

AUDIENCE:  Booo --

THE PRESIDENT:  But I just want you to know the Heat are going to be just fine.  They’re going to be okay.  (Applause.) They are playing basketball the right way.  The Hurricanes -- they had a great season -- no, no, they deserve a big round of applause.  (Applause.)  Tonight you’ve got Florida and Florida Gulf Coast going at it.  (Applause.)  One of them will go to the Elite Eight.  So, let’s face it, Florida is the center of basketball right now.  (Applause.)

But I’m not here to talk about hoops.  I’m here to talk about one of the plans that I put forward in my State of the Union address -- a plan to put people to work rebuilding America.

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