And over the past five years, our businesses have created more than 11 million new jobs. We believed we could reduce our dependence on foreign oil and protect our planet. And today, America is number one in oil and gas. America is number one in wind power. Every three weeks, we bring online as much solar power as we did in all of We believed we could prepare our kids for a more competitive world. And today, our younger students have earned the highest math and reading scores on record. Our high school graduation rate has hit an all-time high.
And more Americans finish college than ever before. We believed that sensible regulations could prevent another crisis, shield families from ruin, and encourage fair competition. Today, we have new tools to stop taxpayer-funded bailouts, and a new consumer watchdog to protect us from predatory lending and abusive credit card practices. And in the past year alone, about ten million uninsured Americans finally gained the security of health coverage.
The Best in Us People, Profit, and the Remaking of Modern Leadership
At every step, we were told our goals were misguided or too ambitious; that we would crush jobs and explode deficits. So the verdict is clear. Middle-class economics works. Expanding opportunity works. And if a bill comes to my desk that tries to do any of these things, it will earn my veto. Today, thanks to a growing economy, the recovery is touching more and more lives. Wages are finally starting to rise again. We need to do more than just do no harm. She and Ben are working as hard as ever, but have to forego vacations and a new car so they can pay off student loans and save for retirement.
Basic childcare for Jack and Henry costs more than their mortgage, and almost as much as a year at the University of Minnesota. In fact, at every moment of economic change throughout our history, this country has taken bold action to adapt to new circumstances, and to make sure everyone gets a fair shot. We set up worker protections, Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid to protect ourselves from the harshest adversity.
We gave our citizens schools and colleges, infrastructure and the internet — tools they needed to go as far as their effort will take them.