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Boehner Lays Out GOP Plan to Fix Economy

Aired September 16, 2011 - 04:00:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: The state of the job market, celebrations in Mexico and a wax sculpture of someone you may recognize. It`s all coming your way on CNN Student News, starting right now.

Oh, it`s Friday, all right, and Fridays are awesome. I`m Carl Azuz.

First up today, more efforts at getting the American economy back on track. Days after President Obama unveiled his jobs plan, House Speaker John Boehner laid out a Republican plan to fix the economy. This all comes as the nation struggles with an ongoing debt crisis and an unemployment rate of just over 9 percent.

Some of the key points in Boehner`s plan: don`t raise taxes, decrease the role of government and increase the role of private business.


REP. JOHN BOEHNER, SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: Some of the president`s proposals, I think, offer an opportunity for common ground.

But let`s be honest with ourselves. The president`s proposals are a poor substitute for the pro-growth policies that are needed to remove barriers to job creation in America, the policies that are needed to put America back to work.

"If we want job growth, we need to recognize who really creates jobs in America, and it`s the private sector.


AZUZ: Brianna Keilar now reports from North Carolina State University. It`s one of the president`s stops on a tour to sell his jobs plan as the way to move forward.


BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN REPORTER (voice-over): In a trip that seemed as much about the 2012 presidential election as pushing his jobs plan, President Obama took his message to the Tarheel State.

OBAMA: Hello, North Carolina.

KEILAR (voice-over): The sights and sounds of the campaign stop, a friendly crowd of thousands at North Carolina State University, even an old slogan with a new twist aimed at Republicans.

OBAMA: They`re mainly people whose refrain is "No, we can`t." But I believe, yes, we can.

KEILAR (voice-over): Those no-we-can`t people the president is talking about are House Republicans. He`s urging them to swallow his plan whole, and he`s prepared to slam them if they don`t.

OBAMA: And they don`t want to pass it because it will give me a win.


Give me a win? Give me a break.


That`s exactly why folks are fed up with Washington.

KEILAR (voice-over): It`s quite the role reversal. The president is trying to play hardball. House Republicans, downright obstinate during the debt ceiling negotiations, are now calling for compromise, unexpectedly reticent to be drawn into another bruising battle.

BOEHNER: I hope he`ll listen to our ideas, and I hope that he`ll work with us to find common ground, to get our economy moving and to create jobs again.

KEILAR (voice-over): That common ground is actually the bulk of the president`s jobs plan, the expansion of a payroll tax cut for employees and cutting payroll taxes for employers in half, the very tax cut President Obama highlighted in his visit to this Raleigh area manufacturing facility.

OBAMA: (Inaudible) American manufacturer and we want to highlight you (ph).

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Yes, sir, anything you can do to help us.

KEILAR (voice-over): But Republicans oppose infrastructure spending the president wants, and tax increases on wealthier Americans as well as hedge fund managers, oil and gas companies and corporate jet owners that Mr. Obama has proposed to pay for the bill.



UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Time for the Shoutout. What is the highest award in the U.S. military? You know what to do. Is it Distinguished Service Cross? Medal of Honor? Silver Star? Or Medal of Freedom. You`ve got three seconds, go.

The highest decoration for someone in the U.S. military is the Medal of Honor. That`s your answer, and that`s your Shoutout.


AZUZ: Yesterday President Obama awarded the Medal of Honor to the first living Marine recognized for actions in Afghanistan or Iraq. His name is Dakota Meyer. Two years ago, Meyer ran through enemy fire over and over again to rescue fellow troops during a firefight in Afghanistan. In all, he saved the lives of 13 U.S. troops and 23 Afghan soldiers.


OBAMA: Because of your honor, 36 men are alive today. Because of your courage, four fallen American heroes came home. Because of your commitment in the thick of the fight, hour after hour, a former Marine who read about your story said that you showed how, in the most desperate, final hours, our brothers and God will not forsake us.

AZUZ (voice-over): Turning now to Libya, the leaders of France and Britain visited the war-torn nation and promised to stand by Libya`s side. British Prime Minister David Cameron and French President Nicholas Sarkozy, whom you see right here, are the two highest-ranking Western leaders to visit Libya since the start of the uprising there.

They offered to help capture Libya`s fallen leader, Moammar Gadhafi, and they said they support the National Transitional Council. The NTC represents the rebels who`ve been fighting to get Gadhafi out of power and they`re still battling for full control of Libya.

On Thursday, rebel forces appeared to be making advances in some of the few remaining strongholds of Gadhafi`s regime, including Gadhafi`s hometown of Sirte.


AZUZ: There`s a celebration going on in Mexico. The nation is marking more than 200 years of independence.


AZUZ (voice-over): Here`s a look at some colorful moments from last year`s events. If you look carefully, you can see the Mexican flag there, waving in the breeze. It`s got three vertical bands of green, white and red, with Mexico`s coat of arms right in the middle of the white band.

Mexico was under Spanish rule for three centuries before getting independence in the early 19th century. We`re celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month here on



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: See if you can ID me. I`m played from Kazakhstan to North America. I`m also an Olympic event featuring nets and goalies. Instead of a field, my athletes use a rink.

I`m ice hockey. And though I`m traditionally considered a men`s sport, women have played for over a hundred years.


AZUZ: Now only do women play ice hockey, they also play virtual ice hockey. But a teenage girl from New York who does just that noticed something about her video games she thought deserved a penalty. She decided to do something about it.

Josh Boose of affiliate WGRZ checks the story from here.


JOSH BOOSE, CNN REPORTER (voice-over) : Fourteen-year-old Lexi Peters from North Tonawanda enjoys playing NHL hockey with her brother and sister and friends on PlayStation. She`s a real hockey player, too, for five years now.

She`s in a Niagara University junior league. But when she plays her NHL video game, the virtual players you can choose are only guys. There were no virtual females. Lexi complained about it to her dad once late last year.

TIM PETERS, FATHER: There was kind of jokingly I just said, "Well, why don`t you write them a letter and see what happens."

BOOSE (voice-over): What happened was Lexi wrote a letter to the CEO of EA Sports himself, the company who produces her favorite hockey video games, NHL 10 and NHL 11. She asked the CEO for the option of a female player she could choose, and she heard back from them rather quickly.

LEXI PETERS, HELPED MAKE VIDEO GAME HISTORY: They said, no, we can`t because NHL -- they had to talk to NHL and stuff, and it wasn`t -- it just wouldn`t work out.

BOOSE (voice-over): But a few months later, she got an email saying they had a change of heart.

LEXI PETERS: I was like, all right, worth a try. So, no, not really. I didn`t really think it would become like this big.

BOOSE (voice-over): Big because not only will there be a female player option on NHL 12, but that female will be in the likeness of Lexi. EA Sports was not available for an interview. But one of the games producers spoke to Yahoo! News, saying, quote, "My first thought was that we want to make people happy with our game. And here`s one girl who wasn`t happy."


AZUZ: All right, pop quiz, hot shots. Before we go, which of these two guys is the real anchor, Anderson Cooper? I`ll give you a hint: it`s not the one made out of wax.



It`s amazing. The -- they took like more than 250 photographs of my head, and they took out this suitcase with all these different eyeballs in it. And I guess I have three different colors of blue in my eye, which I was unaware of.

Like that`s, you know, it depressed me to think that I just have gray hair. So in my mind, I think I had salt-and-pepper hair. But this is clearly evidence that I don`t have any pepper left, that it`s all just salt.

It`s amazing, the skin, they even have like the -- like the little razor stubble. Oh, just sort of -- sort of just want to pat him. I think I look kind of like a jerk, though, I don`t know. I`m not sure I would want to hang out with this guy.


AZUZ: Well, Lexi got her likeness in a video game, Anderson Cooper got his in a wax statue, I didn`t want to be left out. So check out Cardboard Carl. Unlike me, he knows when to keep his mouth shut. You think you`re such a "card", don`t you? Have a great weekend, from the two of us.