President Obama held a Town Hall meeting today, and his first question came from a plastics salesman. The question, on social media site LinkedIn, came from Chuck Painter. Here's how the exchange went, thanks to the White House's transcript of the meeting: Q Good morning, Mr. President. THE PRESIDENT: Good morning. Q I'm from Austin, Texas. I've been in sales in the plastics industry for 20 years. I lost my job in 2009 and fortunate enough to have found another position, become reemployed. My question is what can we do as American citizens to unite ourselves and help the economy? THE PRESIDENT: Well, first of all, are you a native of Austin? Because that's one of my favorite cities in the country. Q Actually, I'm a native of Charlotte, North Carolina, but just relocated to Austin, and I love it there. THE PRESIDENT: Austin is great. Charlotte is not bad. (Laughter.) Q Thank you, thank you, thank you. THE PRESIDENT: That's the reason why I'm having my convention in Charlotte, because I love North Carolina as well. But how long did it take you to find a new job after you had gotten laid off? Q It took nine months. THE PRESIDENT: It took nine months? Q Yes, sir. THE PRESIDENT: And that's one of the challenges that a lot of folks are seeing out there. You've got skilled people with experience in an industry. That industry changes, and you were fortunate enough to be able to move. Some folks, because of the decline in the housing industry, are having trouble with mobility in finding new jobs and relocating in pursuit of opportunity. (... From there Obama made a pitch for his American Jobs Act ... read the transcript for the full plug.) Is anyone surprised that a plastics industry executive would get the first question today? Considering how scripted something like a Town Hall meeting with the President can be, I'm sure nothing is left to chance.
Obama's chat with a plastics salesman
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