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Obama begins post-SOTU tour in Iowa


CEDAR RAPIDS, IA -- President Obama began his post-State of the Union trip with a stop in Cedar Rapids, Iowa on Wednesday to reinforce his call to bolster American manufacturing. 

The initiative, one of four pillars in the White House's "blueprint for an economy built to last," is just one of the new efforts the president will push in his travels throughout the U.S. this week.

After touring Conveyor Engineering and Manufacturing, a plant of about 65 workers that makes very large screws, the president gave a speech focused on reforming the tax code to benefit manufacturers. According to the White House, Conveyor would be eligible to receive an increased manufacturing tax credit if the president’s tax reform proposals were able to get through Congress.

Obama referred to employees of the business when he said, “Jeff and Greg told me that if we passed tax reforms like these, they’d be able to buy more equipment for their facility. So let’s do it. Today, my administration is laying out several concrete actions we can take right now to discourage outsourcing and encouraging investing.”

He continued, “Tell Congress to send me this tax reform plan. I will sign it right away.”

The speech was a mixture of last night’s State of the Union combined with other messaging events where the president has asked the audience to “tell Congress” to do any number of things. And while Iowa’s Republican governor, Terry Brandstad, was in attendance, the Republican National Committee’s prebuttal to the President’s first stop was political and partisan.

“Obviously, the President’s State of the Union address last night and now, as always, his taxpayer funded campaign stop in Iowa, makes it just absolutely clear that President Obama has given up governing,” RNC chairman Reince Priebus said in a conference call with reporters.

The White House continues to insist that the purpose of this three-day, five-state trip is to expand on last night’s speech but the election year implications of visiting the battleground states of Iowa, Arizona, Nevada, Colorado and Michigan are difficult to divorce for the storyline. 

After the President speaks about manufacturing at an Intel facility in Phoenix, AZ he will travel on to Las Vegas, Denver and Ann Arbor, MI.