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Standing before the nation on a “day of reckoning,” President Barack Obama summoned politicians and public alike Tuesday night to forge a path out of the worst economic disaster in a quarter-century by embracing shared sacrifice and costly new endeavors to improve health care, schools and the environment.

“The time to take charge of our future is here,” Obama declared in his first address to a joint session of Congress, watched by millions of worried Americans on television and the Internet.

Adding words of reassurance, he said, “Tonight I want every American to know this: We will rebuild, we will recover, and the United States of America will emerge stronger than before.”

Click here for FULL TEXT and VIDEO of Obama’s speech.

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