Created: 06/26/2014 10:55 PM KAALtv.com
By: Steph Crock
(ABC 6 News) -- From the economy, to student loans, even flooding, President Barack Obama covered it all while in Minnesota Thursday. It was President Obama's second visit to Minnesota this year, but this time the more than 300 invited guests had the floor.
"It is good to be back in Minnesota!" shouted President Obama as he approached the podium. It was his second trip of the year to the Twin Cities, this time in warmer weather too. "If you come here and the Minnesotans are complaining about how cold it is, it's really cold," he joked. However, our weather is also something he addressed seriously. Governor Dayton has declared a state of emergency for 35 counties in the state. "You should feel confident that you’re going to have a strong partner in FEMA and the federal government in the process of cleaning up," said President Obama.
The Commander-in-Chief cruised from that topic onto the state of the economy, first boasting of his achievements in office thus far. "Unemployment is down, the deficits have been cut in half, housing markets have improved, 401k's have gotten more solid....," listed President Obama. Although he also admitted areas that need more work. "Here's the thing, and I'm not telling you anything that you don't know, there are still a lot of folks struggling out there," said President Obama.
That's when the president turned the conversation over to the audience. Questions were all over the board, ranging from student loan debt, climate change, women in the workplace and, of course, more on the economy. "Just having a conversation about what’s going well in your lives, and in your neighborhoods, and communities right now, but also what kind of struggles folks are going though, and what things are helping, and what things aren’t," said President Obama.
Of course, not every question could be answered, but the president left the audience with a positive message. “Cynicism is popular these days, but hopes are better. Thanks everybody!" President Obama said as he left the podium.
Afterward, President Obama spoke at a Democratic fundraiser. He'll be in Minnesota through Friday with his next stop at Harriet Island Bandshell. Two thousand tickets were given away to the event where he plans to narrow down the discussion to the economy and the minimum wage debate.