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Obama: Nation Has Reached Next ‘Sputnik Moment’

Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images
Staff and reporters wait in Statuary Hall while preparing for President Barack Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday.

President Barack Obama will tout the successes of recent investments in research and education during Tuesday night’s State of the Union address, calling this “our generation’s Sputnik moment,” according to excerpts released by the White House.

“Half a century ago, when the Soviets beat us into space with the launch of a satellite called Sputnik, we had no idea how we’d beat them to the moon. The science wasn’t there yet. NASA didn’t even exist,” Obama plans to say.

“But after investing in better research and education, we didn’t just surpass the Soviets; we unleashed a wave of innovation that created new industries and millions of new jobs,” he plans to say.

The president will also continue to press for bipartisanship in the name of putting job creation and innovation before politics.

“New laws will only pass with support from Democrats and Republicans,” Obama plans to say. “We will move forward together or not at all, for the challenges we face are bigger than party and bigger than politics.”

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