DETROIT (WWJ) – The President’s job speech to Congress struck a chord for many workers who’ve lost their jobs.

A union official says he drew some hope from President Barack Obama’s speech and the proposals it contained. Joe Abdoo, Business Manager for IBEW Local 58 said now it’s important that Washington put the nation’s interests first.

“Considering all that’s transpired in the last several months, in the last year, with the bad economy particularly here in Michigan, I think it generated some hope,” Abdoo said. “That’s why I keep using the word ‘hope.’ Hopefully there’s some genuine interest in moving the country forward instead of planned partisan politics.”

Leon LaBrecque, financial advisor at LJRP  in Troy, said there were some points in Obama’s speech that he liked.

“It’s always a good idea to hire people and it’s always a good idea to take care of small businesses,” he said.

However, LaBrecque was quick to point out that he thinks Congress is simply out of touch with working-class America.

“I’m not sure that anybody in Washington has ever really had a real job and has ever been to an unemployment line or has ever done anything. I mean, they get their hair cut paid for and they get their own healthcare benefits and their own retirement benefits. I mean, imagine if we had that kind of job where we could work for, you know, six years or ten years and start getting our pension. I mean, it’s just, they’re not in a reality like we are,” LaBrecque said.

Abdoo agrees, saying last year was devastating for his membership and now, it’s improved to the point where he can only say that it’s bad.

“I’ve had very high unemployment within my local, my own little world, for really, you know, 10 years we’ve been on the down track. But, particularly last year it was devastating,” Adboo said.

State politicians are also commenting on the president’s speech. (Read more here)



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