Obama urges political cooperation, uplift of middle class

WASHINGTON Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:27pm EST

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama called for a focus on the prosperity of the middle class rather than the success of an elite few and urged politicians to set aside harsh partisan divides to address pressing economic problems.

"America's prosperity must rest upon the broad shoulders of the middle class," Obama said on Monday in his inaugural address.

"We cannot mistake absolutism for principle, or substitute spectacle for politics, or treat name-calling as reasoned debate. We must act, knowing that our work will be imperfect," he said in his speech from Capitol Hill.

(Reporting By Mark Felsenthal; Editing by Sandra Maler)

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