Obama tours electric car plant in Kansas City, rips GOP

Kansas City StarJuly 8, 2010 

President Barack Obama arrived in Kansas City today and his first stop was Smith Electric Vehicles, where he took a brief tour and also delivered remarks on the state of the U.S. economy.

During an address at the plant, Obama said his administration's goals never have been to create government programs, but to spur private-sector growth.

"For example, right here at Smith Electric, you've recently passed a milestone — hiring a 50th employee — and I know you're on your way to hiring 50 more," Obama said.

"And we're seeing similar things all across America, with investments and incentives that are fostering growth in wind power and solar power, in energy efficient appliances and home building materials, and in advanced battery technologies and clean energy vehicles."

After Air Force One landed at KCI airport, Obama shook hands with a small, enthusiastic crowd which had gathered. He also was greeted by Gov. Jay Nixon, and U.S. Reps. Emanuel Cleaver II and Dennis Moore.

The president then surprised some by shunning his limousine and going "green" by walking about 600 yards to the nearby Smith Electric plant accompanied by Secret Service and a press entourage.

After his tour, the president's motorcade headed downtown where Obama was to make an appearance at two fundraising events for Robin Carnahan, Democratic candidate for the U.S. Senate.

At the Folly Theater, Obama was in full campaign mode, stumping for Carnahan and Democrats nationwide. He questioned why anyone would want to vote for Republicans this fall, because Americans already know the results of GOP rule.

"We know how this movie ends." Obama said. "We don't want to see it again. We've seen the movie. They're trying to run the okie dokie on you. Trying to bamboozle you. It's not going to work. We don't have to guess how the other party will govern because we're still living with the results."

As Obama walked on stage, he doffed his jacket and said he was going to "get down to business." He complained that Republicans have no new ideas and have nothing more to add to the national conversation than to say "no" to virtually everything.

"They're trying to sell you the same stuff they've been peddling. They are peddling that same snake oil they've been peddling for years," Obama said.

Carnahan preceded Obama on the Folly stage and never mentioned her likely Republican opponent, Roy Blunt, but said he's "been in Washington a very long time."

She charged that Blunt said one thing in Washington and something else back in Missouri. For example, Blunt talks in TV ads about the importance of lowering the deficit. But Carnahan noted Blunt was in Republican leadership when the GOP turned a $128 billion surplus into a $1.2 trillion debt.

"I've got a name for that," Carnahan said. "It's bull."

Read more of this story at KansasCity.com

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