Obama: “We Want an Economy Fueled By What We Invent and What We Build”

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President Obama spoke for about 17 minutes at GE in Schenectady this afternoon, urging that the nation’s economy needs to be focused on innovation as a way to spur job growth.

He announced that GE chief executive Jeffrey Immelt will be the head of his Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, a new group that succeeds his Economic Recovery Advisory Board.

He also touted GE’s deal with India to build power turbines, which the president highlighted by last November during his trip to the country.

“We want an economy fueled by what we invent and what we build. We’re going back to Thomas Edison’s principles. We’re going to build stuff and invent stuff,” Obama said.

The president said that the country has added more than 1 million jobs in the past year, but still millions more are looking for work. In fact, an AP poll today that just 35 percent of Americans say the economy has approved during Obama’s two years in office.

“And even here in Schenectady, as well as GE is doing, I know everybody here knows a neighbor, a friend, a relative who’s still out of work,” Obama said. “So it’s a great think that the economy is growing, but it’s not growing fast enough yet to make up for the damage that was done by the recession.”

He said his next two years in office will be about boosting a economy that has been brought back from near collapse.

“The past two years were about pulling our economy back from the brink,” Obama said. “The next two years, our job now, is putting our economy into overdrive. Our job is to do everything we can to ensure that businesses can take root and folks can find good jobs and America is leading the global competition and will determine our success in the 21st century.”

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