[AllPolitics - State Of The Union]

FDCH

I ask you to pass it and give every American who works hard the chance to go to college.

Ninth -- in the 21st century, we must expand the frontiers of learning across a lifetime. All our people, of whatever age, must have the chance to learn new skills. Most Americans live near a community college. The roads that take them there can be paths to a better future.

My G.I. bill for America's workers will transform the confusing tangle of federal training programs into a simple skill grant to go directly into eligible workers' hands. For too long, this bill has been sitting on that desk down there without action. I ask you to pass it now. Let's give more of our workers the ability to learn and to earn for a lifetime.

(APPLAUSE)

Tenth -- we must bring the power of the Information Age into all our schools. Last year, I challenged America to connect every classroom and library to the Internet by the year 2000, so that, for the first time in our history, children in the most isolated rural towns, the most comfortable suburbs, the poorest inner city schools will have the same access to the same universe of knowledge.

(APPLAUSE)

That is my plan -- a Call to Action for American Education. Some may say that it is unusual for a president to pay this kind of attention to education. Some may say it is simply because the president and his wonderful wife have been obsessed with this subject for more years than they can recall.

That is not what is driving these proposals. We must understand the significance of this endeavor. One of the greatest sources of our strength throughout the Cold War was a bipartisan foreign policy. Because our future was at stake, politics stopped at the water's edge.

Now I ask you -- and I ask all our nation's governors. I ask parents, teachers and citizens all across America for a new nonpartisan commitment to education, because education is a critical national security issue for our future, and politics must stop at the schoolhouse door.

(APPLAUSE)

CLINTON: To prepare America for the 21st century, we must harness the powerful forces of science and technology to benefit all Americans.

This is the first State of the Union carried live in video over the Internet. But we have only begun to spread the benefits of the technology revolution that should be the modern birthright of every citizen.

Our effort to connect every classroom is just the beginning. Now, we should connect every hospital to the Internet, so doctors can instantly share data about their patients with the best specialists in the field.

And I challenge the private sector tonight to start by connecting every children's hospital as soon as possible, so that a child in bed can stay in touch with school, family and friends. A sick child need no longer be a child alone.

(APPLAUSE)

We must build the second generation of the Internet so that our leading universities and national laboratories can communicate at speeds 1,000 times faster than today to develop new medical treatments, new sources of energy, new ways of working together.

But we cannot stop there. As the Internet becomes our new town square, a computer in every home -- a teacher of all subjects, a connection to all cultures -- this will no longer be a dream, but a necessity. And over the next decade, that must be our goal.

(APPLAUSE)

We must continue to explore the heavens, pressing on with the Mars probes and the international space station, both of which will have practical applications for our everyday living.

We must speed the remarkable advances in medical science. The humane genome project is now decoding the genetic mysteries of life. American scientists have discovered genes linked to breast cancer and ovarian cancer, and medication that stops a stroke in progress and begins to reverse its effects -- and treatments that dramatically lengthen the lives of people with HIV and AIDS.

Since I took office, funding for AIDS research at the National Institutes of Health has increased dramatically -- to $1.5 billion. With new resources, NIH will now become the most powerful discovery engine for an AIDS vaccine, working with other scientists to finally end the threat of AIDS.

(APPLAUSE)

Thank you.

Remember that every year -- every year we move up the discovery of an AIDS vaccine will save millions of lives around the world. We must reinforce our commitment to medical science.

To prepare America for the 21st century, we must build stronger families.

Copyright © 1997 Federal Document Clearing House

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