Obama's State of the Union Stars Middle Class

Proposals include child care tax credit, student loan payment cap
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 25, 2010 9:33 AM CST
President Barack Obama speaks at a town hall-style meeting at Lorain County Community College in Elyria, Ohio, as part of his "White House to Main Street Tour," Jan. 22, 2010.   (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

(Newser) – Barack Obama will aim his State of the Union address straight at the middle class, proposing a host of modest programs to benefit what the White House calls “the sandwich generation”—those struggling to care for their aging parents while simultaneously sending their kids to college. Those initiatives include tax credits for child care and retirement savings, caps on some student loan payments, and programs to help care for the elderly.

The speech is still being written, but a senior official tells the New York Times its main themes will be “creating good jobs, addressing the deficit, helping the middle class and changing Washington.” The proposals, which would add little to the federal deficit, represent a much less ambitious and expensive agenda than what Obama attempted last year, but the administration insists it's all part of the president's economic vision. “In no way does this represent a trimming of the sails,” an adviser said.

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