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Edwards announces paid family leave plan

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CONCORD, N.H. (AP) -- Democratic presidential candidate John Edwards says he wants to spend $2 billion a year to help create family leave programs that offer workers paid time off. The former North Carolina senator says he wants workers to be paid for at least eight weeks to care for a newborn or sick family member. The proposal is similar to those offered by his rivals. Edwards would put up more money in the program. New York Senator Hillary Clinton has called for $1 billion a year for such a program. Illinois Senator Barack Obama has proposed $1.5 billion a year. Edwards says he would hope to have the program in place by 2014. He says only 8 percent of American workers have access to paid family leave. Edwards is to speak at a medical center in New Hampshire today. (Copyright 2007 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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