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At Disney World, Obama announces steps aimed at boosting tourism

January 19, 2012|By Christi Parsons
  • President Obama speaks at Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., on Jan. 19, 2012.
President Obama speaks at Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Fla.,… (Jewel Samad / AFP/Getty…)

Reporting from Washington — President Obama wants to make it easier for foreign tourists to come to the United States without making it easier for terrorists to get in.

Speaking to a crowd at Walt Disney World in Lake Buena Vista, Fla., Obama announced new initiatives to increase travel and tourism in the United States, including one that will make it easier for tourists from Brazil and China to get visas to visit.

As first reported this morning by the Orlando Sentinel, the new executive order signed by Obama calls for a 40% increase in processing capacity in both countries over the next year. It says that 80% of nonimmigrant visa applicants around the world must be interviewed within three weeks of applying.

"Obviously our national security is a top priority," Obama said, as he stood in front of the Magic Kingdom. "But we also want to get more international tourists coming to America."

Foreign tourists want to come to the United States, Obama said, and the country needs the jobs that tourism will spur.

"This image is something that's recognized all around the world," Obama said, pointing to the castle behind him.

That's when he accidentally said he was in Disneyland -- a theme park that is not located in a swing state.

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