Retired city worker Sheila Pugach lives in a modest home on a quiet street in Albuquerque, N.M., and drives an 18-year-old Subaru. Pugach doesn't see herself as upper-income by any stretch, but President Barack Obama's budget would raise her Medicare premiums and those of other comfortably retired seniors, adding to a surcharge that already costs some 2 million beneficiaries hundreds of dollars a year each.
Striking a decidedly populist tone, President Barack Obama stood in a resurrected factory Wednesday, imploring lawmakers to work as hard as American blue-collar workers as he pitched his plan to jump-start manufacturing and expand opportunities for the middle class.
The latest census data depict a middle class that's shrinking as unemployment stays high and the government's safety net frays. The new numbers follow years of stagnating wages for the middle class that have hurt millions of workers and families.
Declaring America’s middle class is “under assault,” President Barack Obama unveiled plans Monday to help hurting families pay their bills, save for retirement and care for their kids and aging parents. His comments previewed Wednesday’s State of the Union Address.
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