President Barack Obama opened the sixth day of his jobs push Wednesday with a campaign-style rally at North Carolina State University, saying the country is in the midst of a “national emergency” that requires Congress to act swiftly on his $447 billion plan.

Against the backdrop of more negative poll numbers and two special-election losses for Democrats, Obama called on thousands of college students assembled in the steamy Reynolds Coliseum to mobilize behind the plan, a mix of tax cuts and government spending on infrastructure, jobs programs and construction projects.

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