Elkhart's economic recovery sparked by Republican leadership, not President Obama, Mike Pence says

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By: Krystal Vivian kvivian@953mnc.com

President Barack Obama might return to Elkhart in the coming weeks to talk about the nation’s economic recovery, according to The New York Times.

“Mr. Obama, whose four trips here during 2008 and 2009 tracked the area’s decline, is expected to return for the first time in coming weeks, both to showcase its recovery and to warn against going back to Republican economic policies,” Times reporter Jackie Calmes wrote in the story that published online Saturday and appeared on the front page of Sunday’s edition.

Obama visited Elkhart seven years ago when the area was suffering from crippling unemployment that reached past 20 percent. He made four trips in the next two years to monitor our region’s progress.

The White House, however, will neither confirm nor deny that Obama is returning to the city with a heart anytime soon.

Governor Mike Pence told 95.3 MNC’s Mark McGill that Obama is welcome to visit the Hoosier state anytime, but for him to take credit for Indiana’s economic recovery would be quite a stretch.

“I’m more than happy to have the president come and celebrate the economic success of the state of Indiana, but I’m not real sure what Washington D.C. has done to contribute to it,” he told 95.3 MNC. “We’ve had the lowest unemployment rate of all of our neighboring states. We’ve seen businesses large and small create more than 140,000 jobs over the last three years. And I think that’s been the result of the fact that we’re different from Washington.

”Here in Indiana, we have balanced budgets, we’ve invested in education and in infrastructure and since I became governor, we cut taxes for individuals and businesses every single year that I’ve been governor,“ he continued. ”And the economic recovery that we’ve seen all over the state of Indiana, I think, is testament to the people of Indiana. If the national media wants to shine a spotlight on Indiana’s success, we’ll be happy to celebrate that with them.“

The Governor is coming to Elkhart County on Wednesday afternoon, April 6, for a ceremonial signing of the Regional Cities Initiative funding and Kirk’s Law, which mandates a statewide registry of anyone whose been convicted of child abuse or neglect.

Listen to Pence’s full interview with McGill in the podcast above.