Obama talks estate tax at final bus tour stop
President Obama addresses a crowd at Country Corner Farm Market in Alpha, IL - the final stop on his three-day Midwest bus tour. (Anthony Umrani/CNN)
August 17th, 2011
09:04 PM ET

Obama talks estate tax at final bus tour stop

The final stop on President Obama's three-state Midwest bus tour was at the Country Corner Farm Market in the small town of Alpha, Illinois. The president was roughly an hour behind schedule due mostly to a visit with the Galesburg High School football team, and although the crowd showed some signs of fatigue from waiting in the hot sun, most left the event saying it was worth the wait.

Although his opening remarks didn't change too much, the president did field one interesting question about the future of the estate tax that is worth looking at. I think it's the only question the president got on this topic the whole trip. Here's the exchange as per a transcript provided by the White House:

QUESTION: Thank you, Mr. President, for being here today in Henry County. My name is Karen Urich (ph). I’m a multigenerational farmer, member of the Henry County Board and Henry County Farm Bureau. My question that I have today is I have a concern over estate taxes.

In 2013, if the Senate and the Congress fails to act, we will have our estate taxes go back to the 2001 level. We have family farms that are experiencing having to sell their land in order to pay the property taxes. And I was wondering what you see for the future of the estate tax. Thank you.

THE PRESIDENT: Well, there’s no reason why we have to go all the way back to the 2001 level. There is a compromise that has been discussed where you’d essentially have a $7 million exemption per family. There are some folks who just want to eliminate the estate tax all together. There are others who want to hike it up back to 2001. FULL POST


Topics: Bus Tour • President Obama
Obama Bus Tour Stop #12: Galesburg, IL
August 17th, 2011
05:43 PM ET

Obama Bus Tour Stop #12: Galesburg, IL

On the way to his second town hall of the day, the president stopped by Galesburg High School, home of the Silver Streaks, in Galesburg, Illinois.  He shook hands with the women's tennis and men's football teams.  Before leaving he told the players that football is important "but I hope you're hitting the books too. Education is important."


Topics: Bus Tour • President Obama • The Visuals
President Obama listens to farmers in rural Illinois
August 17th, 2011
03:38 PM ET

President Obama listens to farmers in rural Illinois

ATKINSON, Illinois (CNN) - On the final day of his three-day Midwest bus tour, President Obama returned to the state that first elected him, visiting Wyffels Hybrids, a corn seed producer in Atkinson, Illinois.

The president continued this week's theme of praising America’s resilience while criticizing its politics, saying that this week’s trip through Middle America has reminded him why he ran for office in the first place.

“I will tell you when I travel through downstate Illinois, when I travel through Iowa, when I travel through the Midwest, I am absolutely confident about this country. And the reason is because of you. The reason is because of the American people,” the president said. “But there is something wrong with our politics.”
FULL POST


Topics: Bus Tour • President Obama • The Buzz
Obama Bus Tour Stop #11: Atkinson, IL
August 17th, 2011
02:18 PM ET

Obama Bus Tour Stop #11: Atkinson, IL

The president's first town hall of the day took place among bags of corn at the Wyffel's Hybrid Seed company in Atkinson, IL.  The presdeint made opening statements on the themes of the tour: jobs, trade deals, clean energy initiatives.  During the question and answer portion of the event, Obama said cuts to infrastructure and education is like "eating your seed corn" ... not a smart thing to do for the future.  The president also reassured a questioner that social security is not in crisis. "It will be there for you," he said.


Topics: Bus Tour • President Obama • The Visuals
Obama Bus Tour Stop #10: Morrison, IL
August 17th, 2011
01:54 PM ET

Obama Bus Tour Stop #10: Morrison, IL

The president's first stop for the day was at the Whiteside County Fair in Morrison, IL, where he spent almost an hour greeting people and checking out the dairy cow judging.  At the Ed Brandt Dairy Barn, Mr. Obama arrived in the midst of a dairy cow judging contest, packed with Ayershire, Brown Swiss and other breeds. At the rope line on the way out, the president signed autographs and shook hands. Some children even held out dollar bills for him to sign.


Topics: Bus Tour • President Obama • The Visuals
August 17th, 2011
10:46 AM ET

President's schedule – Wednesday, August 17, 2011

On the third day of his economic bus tour of the Midwest, the President will hold a town hall meeting at Wyffels Hybrids Production Facility in Atkinson, Illinois.   In the afternoon, the President will travel to Alpha, Illinois and hold a town meeting at Country Corner Farm.    In the evening, the President will return to Washington, DC.


Topics: Daily Schedule