U.S. President Barack Obama departs after addressing the White House Summit on Working Families in Washington June 23, 2014. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst
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President Barack Obama said Monday that the United States should join the rest of the industrialized world and offer paid leave for mothers of newborns.Obama praised California, Rhode Island and New Jersey for creating a state benefit. But he has not endorsed legislation that would create a similar national system funded by a payroll tax, and he pledged in his 2008 presidential campaign not to raise taxes on families making under $250,000 a year.Rep. Rosa DeLauro, a Democrat, has introduced legislation that would provide up to 12 weeks of paid leave through a fund in the Social Security Administration, paid for by contributions from employees and employers of 0.2 percent of wages. Obama also encouraged employers to have more flexible work schedules and directed federal agencies to expand flexible work arrangements where possible.
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