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State of the Union focuses on jobs, gun control

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WASHINGTON—President Obama heads to a manufacturing plant in North Carolina Wednesday to highlight one of the key points from his State of the Union speech.

Officials say the president’s focus is to create new jobs for the middle class while telling Congress the wealthy still need to pay more.

President Obama said, “We can’t ask senior citizens and working families to shoulder the entire burden of deficit reduction while asking nothing more from the wealthiest and most powerful.”

He is now pushing for a permanent budget.

He said, “The greatest nation on Earth cannot keep conducting its business by drifting from one manufactured crisis to the next.”

During the State of the Union, President Obama also spoke about allowing homeowners to refinance, immigration reform and a vote on gun control.

President Obama said, “More than two dozen Americans whose lives have been torn apart by gun violence, they deserve a vote.”

That topic is still creating controversy.

Stephen Barton, a survivor of the Aurora shooting, said, “We need to look at high-capacity magazines, background checks, gun trafficking.”

Ted Nugent said, “Go after the recidivistic bad guys, go after the nut cases that proclaim their craziness.”

Republicans say the speech did not go into specifics about cutting spending or reducing the national debt.

Rep. Bill Huizenga, (R) Michigan, said, “Reducing spending and taking down the deficit, I just don’t buy it. We’ve heard that before.”

The president pitched new initiatives to create jobs, pay for energy research, improve education and expand trade.

In foreign affairs, he condemned North Korea’s nuclear test and promised 34,000 troops will come home from Afghanistan this year.