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Crowd Serenades Obama With 'Happy Birthday' Before He Launches Into Speech on 'Phony Scandals' and the Middle Class

"I'm now 52 and Michelle says I don't look a day over 51."

President Obama on Tuesday again accused U.S. lawmakers of allowing a handful of so-called “phony scandals” to distract them from addressing the needs of the U.S. economy.

But before the president could launch into the meat of his speech, his audience at Desert Vista High School in Phoenix decided to commemorate his 52nd birthday with lively rendition of “Happy Birthday.”

"I'm now 52 and Michelle says I don't look a day over 51," the president joked afterwards:

Later, the president complained that a handful of “phony scandals” have distracted Congress from doing its job.

“Thanks to the grit and resilience of the American people, we’ve cleared away the rubble from the financial crisis, and begun to lay a new foundation for stronger, more durable economic growth,” he said.

“But as any middle-class family will tell you, we’re not where we need to be yet.  Even before the crisis hit, we were living through a decade where a few at the top were doing better and better, while most families were working harder and harder just to get by.

“Reversing this trend must be Washington’s highest priority.  It’s certainly my highest priority.  But for most of this year, an endless parade of distractions, political posturing, and phony scandals have shifted focus from what we need to do to shore up the middle class,” he added. “And as Washington heads towards another budget debate, the stakes could not be higher.”

He went on to repeat that the economy needs to grow from the “middle out.”

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Follow Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) on Twitter

Featured image screen grab.

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