Which candidate do you agree with on...

Economy

Issue Position |

The United States was losing more than 700,000 jobs per month when Obama took office. Roughly one month after his inauguration, he signed a stimulus bill that included direct spending for infrastructure, education, health, and energy. The measure also provided federal tax incentives and expanded social welfare provisions, including unemployment benefits.

Obama approved $55 billion for a second round of bailout funding for U.S. automakers GM and Chrysler in March 2009, adding to the $25 billion President George W. Bush signed off on before leaving office. He also appointed a “car czar” who oversaw the post-bankruptcy restructuring of those companies, resulting in management shake-ups, an overhaul of product lines, and large shares of both automakers going to a UAW pension fund.

The U.S. jobs picture has improved in recent years, with the nation experiencing slow but unbroken growth since March 2010. Still, labor force participation remains a deep concern, as the rate has dropped lower this year than any time since Obama took office in 2009 -- and lower overall than any time since 1981.

Endorse

Obama on Economy
406 Comments

Reader Endorsements

Donna Ziegler West

Donna Ziegler West Things are better and continue to get better. He has a plan. Romney made promises but where are the specifics?

Bill Maiden

Bill Maiden Before he ever won the election and took office, President Obama said that it would take time to turn things around and we couldn't expect everything to improve overnight. Clearly, the USS BUSH had an 8 year head of steam ...See More

Fernando Garcia

Fernando Garcia Mitt wants to take us back to deregulation and cutting taxes which got us into this mess to begin with, (read the Bush economy).

Maribeth Mercado White

Maribeth Mercado White He raised our economy from the grave slowly but carefully. There are also many policy he needed to straighten up such as banks, credit cards, foreclosure etc. Slowly but it will be a long term recovery that will benefit our ...See More

Kitty Jawitz

Kitty Jawitz Obama all the way. Obama 2012!

Dadou Dadou Db

Dadou Dadou Db Tricke down economics has not worked and the test was the Bush's term on power.

Bill Gallagher

Bill Gallagher Romney's business background is not the kind I respect. I don't trust his supply side pals. I fear the GOPs history on economic issues, creating further enrichment of only the already super rich.

Jon Divine

Jon Divine economy is in upswing. google "gdp growth", employment growth, stock market, etc.

Shaeen Shillongtownboy

Shaeen Shillongtownboy because its Obama's predecessors "the republicans" who put our country into the great depression, Obama has at least got us out of that. We don't trust another republican like Romney the Liar to put us back into the same situation ...See More

Peg Warren

Peg Warren I'm not so sure we've gone thru a Great Recession. For too many people this IS the Great Depression of our times. I believe that Pres. Obama took the correct steps to keep us from crashing even mores, and we ...See More

Kate Anderson

Kate Anderson President Obama got a GOP disaster

Sean J. O'Rourke

Sean J. O'Rourke While the American economy isn't all the way back - unemployment is high - it's worth remembering that four years ago the country was on the verge of a second Great Depression. While I do not see eye to eye ...See More

Jamie Deveaux

Jamie Deveaux The Republican Policies of redistributing the wealth to the top 1-5% with the argument that the job creators will use the tax gains to create jobs has not worked. The GOP requested the OMB to take on a study of ...See More

Gary Allen Pool

Gary Allen Pool It's simple: 1) Over the past 10 months, under President Obama, the U.S. economy has shown definite signs of steady improvement. 2) The Republicans handed over an economy in ruins when President Obama and the Democrats took control of the ...See More

Michael Minjack

Michael Minjack We're finally getting out of the BUSH quicksand

Jim Callahan

Jim Callahan He is ethical.

Tim Brown

Tim Brown Capitalism is a tool of our Democracy not the voice of it. Obama understands that, Romney doesn't

C Fred Crawmer

C Fred Crawmer stay the course...will get better as it is now but it'll be a slow process. No one silver bullet here.

Daniel Tawarahara

Daniel Tawarahara Slowly is the right direction is better than quickly but in a wrong direction

Daniel Tawarahara

Daniel Tawarahara Slowly is the right direction is better than quickly but in a wrong direction

Jeffe Romais

Jeffe Romais It takes thick skin to fix the Bush economic mess while being bullied and heckled by the "Do Nothing" Congress and Tea Party radicals. Obama's policies are lifting the country out of the worst economic disaster since the Great Depression. ...See More

Carl Barbee

Carl Barbee THE LESSER OF 2 EVILS

Scott Carter

Scott Carter I simply don't want to repeat the Bush era with another more extreme tax cutting for the top 2% deregulating Ryan budget cutting Republican adminastration

Peter Wong

Peter Wong I made offers on five houses in the past two months, all were rejected. WHY? each house received more than TEN offers. Economy is back, and the guy running it deserves my vote.

Ann Davis

Ann Davis Way better than when President Obama took office. Repairs take time! A change now would mean a whole new approach. Plus I don't trust Romney as far as I could throw him...On anything!!!!!

Kitty Jawitz

Kitty Jawitz Obama all the way!

Savitri Basaviah

Savitri Basaviah From where it was four years ago, the economy has improved considerably and is poised to grow more.

Russell Reynolds

Russell Reynolds Romney has no plan that he can state

David Friese

David Friese Romney's economic plan is just a continuation of what the country had under Bush but worse!

Nikita 'Natureboy' Floyd

Nikita 'Natureboy' Floyd The economy for me was so bad in 2010 I didn't want to live but in 2012 I have everything to live for. It has been a shift, slow growth is solid growth, not like going on a new diet, ...See More

Jack Srouji

Jack Srouji Romney is not honest. He frequently tells lies and he expects people to believe his lies that is based on hypocrisy and hate.

John Smith

John Smith Mitt's talk about the economy seems only to remove more demand from the economy and further restrict cash flow, strangling what little growth there has been. The deficit is irrelevent in the time frame of a presidential term With 10yr ...See More

Vicki Bryant

Vicki Bryant I beleive in Obama. He care about all the people, not just the 1%.Romney says that 47% of us are exceptable sacrifices that he doesnt care about. Obama respect women rights .Edcuation and job equality.We are moving forwad slowly.It takes ...See More

Vicki Bryant

Vicki Bryant I beleive in Obama. He care about all the people, not just the 1%.Romney says that 47% of us are exceptable sacrifices that he doesnt care about. Obama respect women rights .Edcuation and job equality.We are moving forwad slowly.It takes ...See More

Chris Obiesie

Chris Obiesie The economy is improving. There is hope that it will continue to improve. If really Romney is serious why did his company collapse and many were fired.

Jim Hughes

Jim Hughes Everone knows that when something is BROKEN, it take 100 time longer to put back together. Romney claims he is a business man, a dentist is a doctor! Rpmney is no Brain doctor. Give me a ethical man (Obama) rather ...See More

Robert Miller

Robert Miller Obama equals continued recovery while the plans of Romney signal depression as per Greece within two years of his becoming president.

Edward Bryan

Edward Bryan President Obama is the Best for the Job !

BeenThere DoneThat

BeenThere DoneThat The economy is out of the ditch I and we need to keep it out. Moving forward.

Christine Weitz

Christine Weitz The economy cratered in 2008. The Obama administration did what it needed to do, which was intervene to prevent a complete free fall. Our economy is still shaken and could use continued intervention. The absolute worst course of action would ...See More

Kee Brown

Kee Brown I feel that this country is headed in the right direcdtion. It took Bush and the republicans 8 years to create the mess that Obama inherited it will take him at least the same amount of time before we see ...See More

Ingrid Frank

Ingrid Frank The recovery has been slow, but perhaps for this reason will turn out to be sustainable and will likely accelerate.

Vera Delle Brown

Vera Delle Brown The economy has been slowly moving in the right direction. I do not any change that will set the economy back again. Especially, if we are going to reset to the old rules. Candidate Romney has given no concrete indication ...See More

Lea Lyra Gary

Lea Lyra Gary HIs ideas are logical and rational

Bianca Williams

Bianca Williams He has a better plan than Romney

Jary Sheppard Earl

Jary Sheppard Earl Obama inherited a devastated economy and he has turned it around. Although there is a long way to go, it is headed in the right direction. I believe Romney's main goal is to deregulate and attempt to improve the economy ...See More

Azeb Aregawi

Azeb Aregawi We are beginning to see the result now and on his second term we will definitely see the labor of love. You remember president Clinton did it! Beware and don't give it away to the Republican!

Princess Peyton Manuella Nelly

Princess Peyton Manuella Nelly I just dont believe anything Romney say. he look like someone that can change his mind anytime. i wonder if he wins...whats going to happen to us who take student loans. not al of us have rich daddys to pay ...See More

Ryan D. Brady

Ryan D. Brady "The government doesn't create jobs" is a false premise from which all republican economic thinking is derived. If you want to grow a business, you take out a loan and invest in its future. If you want to grow the ...See More

Susan Bounds

Susan Bounds I'm concerned about economic recovery for all Americans, not just the 1%. I've never believed trickle-down economics work. I don't trust a candidate who denigrates 47% of the population, and whose VP candidate cites Ayn Rand as a seminal influence ...See More

John Warga

John Warga Economy is on the mend, lowering taxes without reduced spending will push US backwards toward another recession

Raagee Anagheel

Raagee Anagheel He has the real recipe for growing the economy.

Biz Dev

Biz Dev Unemployment is below 8% now and he's recovered all the jobs which Dubya lost.

Persephonae Velasquez

Persephonae Velasquez We don't need another Bush. Maybe it's a bad reason, but the economy's always going to yo-yo. At least with Obama we have health care.

Louis Montalvo-Realtor

Louis Montalvo-Realtor Mr.Rommey may think that turning a problem child around is easy after all it was Mr. Bush who made it from better to worse and this country can not afford another Bush experience.

Pamela Hoyles

Pamela Hoyles Obama's administration has brought the Economy from the brink. Wall Street is back on track, the dow is up and foreclosures are down. Unsure of Mitt's math or plan regarding his plan.

Theresa Smith

Theresa Smith Obama understands that things will have to CHANGE in this country for us to have a strong economy. The reality is that manufacturing toasters will probably never come back to America, because toasters are cheap and can be made cheaply ...See More

Mary McGrail

Mary McGrail If we can't help our own who can we help.

Jackie Johnson

Jackie Johnson I feel the POTUS has us going in the right direction for jobs

Richard Mann

Richard Mann You know why the economy is in bad shape.

Judy Hughes

Judy Hughes The President understands the role of government in a national recovery. That is of critical importance. A businessman simply does not have that perspective. This requires a steady leader.

Brenda Clements

Brenda Clements The economy appears to be recovering slowly, but the word here is Recovery. In reading Paul Krugman's analysis, slow economic recovery after a recession or financial crisis occurs simply because "many families and or companies are left with high levels ...See More

Joyce Lanham

Joyce Lanham Because the Rs paid for TWO wars on a credit card and Romney is a self proclaimed conservative Republican.

Zoraida Rivera

Zoraida Rivera When Barack Obama took office he inherited a catastrophic mess! Bigger than the American people could ever imagine, He has tackled each task with intelligence and dignity. He stands by the people, he hears and feels their needs. He can ...See More

Nellie Nell

Nellie Nell Forward!

Jonas Delva

Jonas Delva He enherits a mess from Georges Bush and now we're on the right track. We have to move forward and we can't change course.

Otis Zeon

Otis Zeon This President caught a falling knife and bleed throughout is first term, now we are starting to see progress with unemployment of white at 7.8% and blacks at 13.8%, GM is alive and banks are lending again... But he needs ...See More

Catherine Ratliff

Catherine Ratliff Middle-out not top-down approach protects and supports everybody.

Brian Shin

Brian Shin The economy has been steadily increasing since obama entered. Hey Romney it's a country not a company.

Robert D. Reynolds

Robert D. Reynolds WE are getting better why should we go with someone who will not tell us his plans!!

Rondalyn Everson

Rondalyn Everson I want to mantain my personal freedoms as a woman

Jack Nixon

Jack Nixon A person with an IQ of (1) can see what's going on here!

Annette Murphy

Annette Murphy Trickle-down economics hasn't worked.

Eddie Kadoyi

Eddie Kadoyi Look, We have came longway.... from loosing so many Job per Month. cose that little Bush now it will take time need 12 more years of Mr President Obama or the Clinton

Carmen Spoor

Carmen Spoor We don't ned a CEO in the Whitehouse. Romney has offered nothing of substance here. We are making progress and that doesn't need to be wiped out before the full recovery has a chance to take place.

James Worthen

James Worthen He has been consistent with improving our economy. From near Depression of a Recession to contant, unbroken. growth. He also cared enough to help those that needed it most, with extended unemployment, tax breaks to go back to school to ...See More

Jake Lester

Jake Lester Trickle-down economics hasn't worked. Period.

Verma Cooke-hutchinson

Verma Cooke-hutchinson He has the best plan to bring jobs back. Romney only wants to fire people.

Vera Gbedemah

Vera Gbedemah hes good at it keep him president

Gladys Re-electObama Astacio

Gladys Re-electObama Astacio We are on the road to recovery.

Danny Ritchie

Danny Ritchie I am a 47%er who refuses to take responsibility for my life. It's NOT MY FAULT!!

Anne Greene

Anne Greene President Obama inherited two bogus wars that GWB charged on the federal credit card, taking Clinton's huge surplus to a huge deficit. Any wonder we're in the mess we're in? The only reason the country isn't in better shape is ...See More

Angela Dinkins-Buracker

Angela Dinkins-Buracker Those of YOU who thought that President Obama could come in and end the economic crisis in just 4 short years, well you're simply unrealistic! This crisis started in the Bush administration (REPUBLICIAN)! Or have most of you forgotten this ...See More

Robin Farrell Oleck

Robin Farrell Oleck He is working to bring the country back on track slowly and stedily. This makes more sense than trying to force an issue not well understood. Romney doesn't really understand.

Jo-Ann Morgan

Jo-Ann Morgan Do we want rich corporations to own us? (Are we to become the world of "The Matrix"?) Or- is this still a vital democracy that gives everyone a fair chance? Who in their right mind would even consider electing an ...See More

My 401k is back after huge loses under bush.

Heather Bleakley

Heather Bleakley Romney's plan is vague and where he gets specific, e.g. 20% tax reduction, his math doesn't add up. You cannot reduce the deficit without increasing revenue.

Sam Harris

Sam Harris He tried to improve much but was always vetoed by the house of republicans also!

Athena Hacker

Athena Hacker Quite simply, because President Obama said upfront before he was even elected, that it would not; COULD not be completely fixed in his first term, and likely not even fully better in his second. But that he would, and his ...See More

Madalyn Fuqua

Madalyn Fuqua Invest in the USA thats why!

Sandeepan Mukherjee

Sandeepan Mukherjee Because I believe more in data than in speculation and hypothesis. Democrats left a surplus in 2001, Republicans took the country to bankruptcy, Democrats have got the country out of the ditch. Republicans now want to take the ball and ...See More

Sheila Beaudoin

Sheila Beaudoin ITS OBVIOUS.....JUST listen to Romney. He knows how to make money at the expense of the little guy...and that is exactly what a government should do?

Sheila Beaudoin

Sheila Beaudoin The economy was is surplus during Clinton's presidency. Bush destroyed that AND destroyed our economy by allowing banks, home real estate market (the biggest economy boost, by the way), energy, car companies, the first attack on the U.S. soil since ...See More

LindaScherer Card Lujan Allan

LindaScherer Card Lujan Allan This job is not finished yet and only Obama's administration can be trusted to keep the jobs in this country and bring more of them here.

Tony Kwasniewski

Tony Kwasniewski I don't trust Romney !!!

Onalisa Smith

Onalisa Smith The economy may be moving at a slow rate, but that's due to Bush's mistakes. And Romney believes that saying personal and religous beliefs makes up for not answering questions. He sure is quick to say what Obama isn't doing, ...See More

Laura Tylka

Laura Tylka I like his view of manufacturing in the United States and creating jobs in our country.

Catfish Beans

Catfish Beans Because America's done with the trickle down Kool-Aid that Romney's pushing.

Cyril Price

Cyril Price The stimulus helped the auto industry survive while Romney wanted it to go bankrupt.

Robert Johnson

Robert Johnson The stimulus worked and we are recovering.

Ansara Lee Sr.

Ansara Lee Sr. has everyone included i his economic plans...Pres.Obama is concerned for all americans even the 47% of the people Romney wants to cut off..

Nityan Doodnauth

Nityan Doodnauth The president is going on the right driction

Nityan Doodnauth

Nityan Doodnauth The president is going on the right driction

Lisa Baker

Lisa Baker Governments aren't for profit corporations only interested in the bottom line. It's just fundamentally different and absurd to think that is a 'business model' should be copied by an elected government.

Jennifer Arnold

Jennifer Arnold Obama does not bow down to corporate bullies. Slow and steady wins the race.... Don't need Bush back!

Vincent Flament

Vincent Flament Spend today on things that matter and create jobs to stimulate the economy (Infrastructure, Energy, targeted tax-breaks), and repay the money when the economy is booming and when tax revenue goes up! Interest rates are at record lows remember?

Edwin Dorn

Edwin Dorn Balanced approach that emphasizes building a solid foundation, not turning a quick profit.

John P. Pavelec

John P. Pavelec Keynsian economics works. Invest in companies so they can hire people. Invest in state and local governments so they won't fire people. We needed alarger stimulus bill to offset the layoffs occuring at the state and local level. Obama had ...See More

Carol Johnson

Carol Johnson He has better approach by raising taxes on the higher income and cutting spending and waste.

Ilse Genovese

Ilse Genovese He did what was necessary to get the country out of a deep hole that we collectively helped dig. He has put in place measures which will "turn the ship", slowly but surely.

Leslie Mason

Leslie Mason Context is important here - as is the attention span of our society, collectively we dug a large hole and it cannot be gotten out of overnight - my understanding is that large events like this take time to right.See More

Andy Bilmanis

Andy Bilmanis realistic approach sure and steady recovery

Eliner Tryon Elgin

Eliner Tryon Elgin The turn around has been slow, but given the choice of going back to giving more tax breaks and the opponent not really telling how he would pay for the tax cuts or staying the course that is making small ...See More

Judith McEwen

Judith McEwen we will have to raise some taxwa

Robert Stone

Robert Stone Neither have a decent plan, but Obama has stopped the rot and it is slowly turning around. Any talk of tax cuts is totally irresponsible, we have to reverse the negative cash flow and start on paying down the debt.See More

Kevin Swafford

Kevin Swafford Obama has demonstrated a willingness to make very tough decisions concerning the economy that are intended to help most Americans. Though not perfect--he is certainly better than Mitty Robot.

Michael J. Gould

Michael J. Gould Obama doesn't flip flop 5,000 times on the economy.

Andrew Sever

Andrew Sever Because Obama can do simple math.

Ryan Sanders

Ryan Sanders Wasn't born with a silver spoon in his mouth

Rob Wood

Rob Wood he is not a flip flopper

Dusan Petrovic

Dusan Petrovic President Obama and his administration's ideas, actions and plans are focused to stop US serious declining, not just as a World's largest power in all terms but as a very much loved place to be. Not only that, he is ...See More

Phillip Reid

Phillip Reid Romney stands for the tax cuts for the rich. Republicans aren't trying to create jobs.

Sarah Hamer

Sarah Hamer why did romney put money in banks overseas if he love America so much?

Will Seeley

Will Seeley The economy is suffering because our economic policy is as some of the most conservative it's ever been. Romney would double down on that.

Destiny Hubert

Destiny Hubert The President is working towards the betterment of our country IF THEY DON'T REALIZE THEY BETTER CHECK WHAT HAPPENED UNDER REAGAN

Mounir Keshen

Mounir Keshen I'm an independent voter. This country was going down the Cliff when Obama took over. His policies stabilize the economy. Any nation, for the people to do better, the country has to do better. Now the country is doing fine, ...See More

Carol May

Carol May He will

Carol May

Carol May He will

Rosemary Cerniello

Rosemary Cerniello He has submitted excellent jobs bills which the Republic Congress voted down, so it seems to me that the Repulicans don't care if Americans have jobs or not. In spite of Republican filibusterin and obstructionism, he has created five million ...See More

Jose Delgado

Jose Delgado I WORK IN RETAIL BUSINESS AND I CAN SEE HOW ECONOMY IS IMPROVING

Felice McEuen

Felice McEuen Unemployment is done and the Stock market is over 13500+!

Helen Hayes

Helen Hayes He's true to his word. The job picture has been improving. I'm better off than I was 4 years ago; all my friends are. We all work, pay our share of taxes, some of us even rent apartments. But we're ...See More

Diana Kitch

Diana Kitch Pretty sure Romney doesn't have my best interests at heart. I am one of the 47 percent hw now says it was a mistake to mention (which it WAS - for him)

Don Mau

Don Mau If all these rich guys with their minimal tax rates are the job creators, where are the jobs? We need to get people working upgrading our infrastructure and we need higher taxes to pay for it.

Fran Powers

Fran Powers We're moving in the right direction, slowly but surely.

Kay Branaman Eakin

Kay Branaman Eakin These problems would be far less if Congress had done its job.

Norman Powell

Norman Powell Given the extent of the great recession, we are recovering quite well. The policies of Romney and the republicans would put us at risk of returning the the policies that brought on this recession in the first place.

Matthew Davin

Matthew Davin Tax cuts to Billionaires won't work. They'll buy more yachts and strippers.

Allison Houston

Allison Houston I trust President Obama to do the right thing for the majority of Americans. I do not trust Romney, period.

Moru Souare

Moru Souare We all know his plan, and we know what he believes cause no one knows what Mitt believe he keeps flip flopping everyday. Mitt is just a political opportunist that I will always call PRESIDENTIAL PREDATOR

Stephanie Cossom

Stephanie Cossom Because I'm a hard working, tax paying, patriotic American who loves this country.

Faye Schwimmer

Faye Schwimmer The turn-down in our economy is Republican policy driven. We need to give President Obama more time to continue his policies to extricate us from Republican trickle-down economics.

Bernard Brown Jr.

Bernard Brown Jr. Mr Obama's approach to the economy, considering the improvements in Michigan and Ohio clearly shows he is on the right road. I trust him to continue

Juanita Nikki Person-Chavis

Juanita Nikki Person-Chavis President Obama tells me the truth and he is trustworthy. He said the way back would be hard.

Joe Mbu

Joe Mbu Sensible and balanced approach

Greg Davidson

Greg Davidson Seems to me much of the huge new ideas, improvements in the economy (products) have been results of collaboration between business & universities, federal government research, and highly educated American & non-American graduates. I believe if federal taxes are cut, ...See More

Willard Ross

Willard Ross Having returned from a 3,000 mi. sight seeing trip to Oregon I saw so much traffic, Vinyards, Orchards, Farms, and Dairy Farms all the through CA. from Bakerfield to Redding CA. then we went through a vast forrest and saw ...See More

Susan Keller

Susan Keller 1. Banks have to have matching capital to cover gambling practices. THANK YOU OBAMA! 2. Banks can't charge me for a bounced check unless I gave them that right! THANK YOU OBAMA! 3. I can get a mammogram with out ...See More

Christine Gray

Christine Gray I have not heard one specific example of Romney saving or creating jobs at his companies or his state during this recession.

Tommy Phillips

Tommy Phillips I THANK MR OBAMA SHOULD HELP THE POOR FRIST THEN THE MED CLASS IF WE DONT HAVE POOR WE DONT HAVE POOR!!!!!!! GOOD FOR EV1

Carlos Omar Rodríguez

Carlos Omar Rodríguez Wow Obama gets this one. Not because I fully agree with him, but because I highly disagree with Romneyᷰs stance and track record.

Jerry Jewler

Jerry Jewler Look at the facts: the American auto industry has risen from the grave and jobs are looking better.

Lynda Hogan

Lynda Hogan When President Obama took office from 8 years of Bush running the Whitehouse, our economy was in the worst mess it has ever been in that I can ever remember and I am 65! In 3 1/2 years despite the ...See More

Millicent Hollins

Millicent Hollins Never, never, never has tax cuts created jobs. Romney is highly dishonest with us. What are the 25 million jobs that he plans to create? He has NOT ID one job sector where the jobs will come from.

Mattie B. Marshall

Mattie B. Marshall Our President is for all the American - uplifting with dignity and respect. Our President does not label hardworking citizens of America as poor, less than, victims, Who is Wal-Mart?

Leimomi Martin

Leimomi Martin Obama fighting to keep jobs here in the US, Mitt like all of business has sent jobs over seas.

Kelly Parrish

Kelly Parrish Romney sends all his jobs overseas, The trillions in debt where created during the Bush era. It took Clinton into his second term to clean up the Reagan era.

Mohamed Hassan

Mohamed Hassan My reason Obama created so mony jobs and obama better Romney when it is cames job creation.

Rachel Voss

Rachel Voss Simple. To me, bottom up is always the best way. I know that Joe, John, Mario and Tyrone are going to go and spend their money. Kid needs new shoes, lights need to be paid, child support, groceries and they're ...See More

Mayer Buxbaum

Mayer Buxbaum It is my belief that Mitt Romney never made a cent manufacturing anything, He was blessed to have been born rich. His financial success stems from taking over businesses that was started through the labor of other people, take loans ...See More

Christopher Gourgouras

Christopher Gourgouras We need to give more to the people not the corporate elite.

Norine Leithem

Norine Leithem Read the facts, not the lies

Tamara Shavers Harvey

Tamara Shavers Harvey Slow and steady progress builds a stronger foundation.

Sardeth Wynn

Sardeth Wynn Because a slow recovery is better then what Romney and CO have in mind.

Ezekiel Josephs

Ezekiel Josephs Its already improving, no need for a change at this point

Vicki Green

Vicki Green We do not need to go back to Bushonomics.

James Graziano

James Graziano This is a slow process to restore health to the economy and Obama is on the right track - we are seeing improvement in jobs, and housing. To reverse these advances by giving breaks to affulent Americans does nothing for ...See More

Jewels Ofthenile

Jewels Ofthenile This is about long-terms resolutions. We got in this mess because CEOs and our government were short-sighted!!

Will Ugwu

Will Ugwu Obama's approach to everything is more long lasting. He really knows what people are going through and really cares about everybody. Romney is more about now the few rich people and does not understand what people are going through. Romney ...See More

Dan Beck

Dan Beck Romney offers the same stuff republicans have offered since 2000 - tax cuts, tax cuts tax cuts and more tax cuts for the very rich. The Republicans got us in the mess we're in now and I don't know why ...See More

Laura Nina Thomas

Laura Nina Thomas The economy was losing jobs and now the economy is adding jobs but we have a long way to go.

Nancy Meehan Nicholson

Nancy Meehan Nicholson Our economy is recovering from the devastation caused by the economic policies of the Bush administration. As President Clinton said, it will take longer than 3 1/2 years to clean up the mess. I endorse President Obama.

Joel Harris

Joel Harris I DO TRUST President Obama I DO NOT trust Mitt Romney

Gary Cross

Gary Cross I endorse President Obama because he was given a difficult situation when taking office and we are headed in the right direction. He deserves a second term in office.

Brenda Black

Brenda Black He will do all that he can to help our country. Taxes need to go up for the wealthy. He knows that the fraud in all of our healthcare needs to end. Well, I will rest my case with the ...See More

Landra Major

Landra Major America is not for sale...

John Forbyn

John Forbyn Because he's not a capitalist dickbot.

Jake Black

Jake Black He has more experience running a nation than Romney!

Maeve Ryan

Maeve Ryan Romney wants to help his rich buddies. Obama is like us. We're not big fat liars.

Paid Subscriber

Paid Subscriber President Obama has grown the economy in the past 3+ years despite obstruction from the Republicans in congress. His American Jobs Act will kickstart the economy and put almost 2 million people back to work. Mitt Romney has no such ...See More

Cassandra Fountain

Cassandra Fountain Because believe it or not, the economy has grown although slow, and thousands of job has been added to the economy.

Linda Dacosta

Linda Dacosta The DOW is double what it had collapsed under the Bush (GOP)al watch and I thought I had lost my nest egg. Now the DOW and the NASDAQ are back to their highs and my nest egg has recovered, and ...See More

Emberdink Humberdittle

Emberdink Humberdittle I most certainly endorse this president when it comes to the economy. The GDP was at MINUS 8.9 percent just before he took his oath of office, and since he's been president, it's been in the plus signs. His tax ...See More

Carlos Allen

Carlos Allen I feel like people aren't corporations, and I want my vote to help others that are part of the 47% to get the help they need to get back to work.

Julia Gosztyla Ziobro

Julia Gosztyla Ziobro Things ARE getting better. He started with an economy in the worst shape we'd seen in generations and it's slowly getting better. The alternative is going back to the dramatic robbery of the country's coffers to make rich people richer.See More

Shalin Shekhar

Shalin Shekhar People need to understand that there is a difference between running a country and running a business. Business prime objective is profit not people (That is what Romney did in Bain cap) and in country the main focus is people ...See More

Jerry Planta

Jerry Planta COME NOW, PRESIDENT BUSH JUST SIMPLY LEFT THE OFFICE IN A DISASTER. WE ARE LUCKY THAT WE NOW HAVE A PRESIDENT WHO IS DOING THE BEST TO TRY TO FIX THAT BIG DISASTER

He knows what it takes to survive from the bottom up.

Michelle Kosek

Michelle Kosek What works for business will not necessarily work for the economy of the US. Governor Romney cannot outsource the United States Government. The United States is not a profit-making business. Romney doesn't understand the ordinary man or woman - he ...See More

Patrick Cronin

Patrick Cronin compared to Europe he acted quickly wth is stimulus program and saved us (including Europe) from a Depression. The costly wars of the Bush Administration were hurdles that he has managed to at least approach and I believe handing the ...See More

Patricia Carlton

Patricia Carlton Obama's approach is balanced. The economy is not just about taxes, but trade agreements and re-vitalization of American industry.

Ken Lee

Ken Lee I don't trust private equity industry, self-serving bunch for capitalistic reasons, but self serving none the less

Kay Smith

Kay Smith If you want to live like a Republican, vote like a Democrat.

Thomas Mosby

Thomas Mosby PBO is on the right track, trying to get this economy back on its feet...and he is doing all that he can do...better than any other Pres...as quoted by Bill Clinton

Kitty Jawitz

Kitty Jawitz Realistic.

Jeanette Leach

Jeanette Leach My IRA has more than doubled since Obama took office in January 2009. Keep up the good work for 4 more years.

Anshul Gupta

Anshul Gupta How is Romney going to make a meaningful reduction in deficits while increasing military spending and lowering taxes? With $2.5T in revenues, $0.9T in military spending, and $2.9T in civilian spending, Romney's plan is a mathematical fantasy (which is why ...See More

Emberdink Humberdittle

Emberdink Humberdittle The GDP was at MINUS 8.9 percent in the last quarter of 2008. One of the many facts that the Republican campaign seems to have overlooked. Romney is running on the same policies platform GW Bush ran on, only without ...See More

Bill Macomber

Bill Macomber Clearly better. He understands you can't cut taxes and expect wars to pay for themselves. If tax cuts for the rich created jobs they would have done so already.

Patrick Ogunoh

Patrick Ogunoh He is better for the economy because he understands how American unemployed feel and working hard to create favorable condition for more job creations.

Jennifer Hill

Jennifer Hill He's not a plutocrat

Lytton Means

Lytton Means The economy is an issue where presidents get to much credit when it is doing well and too much criticism when things go south. If I remember correctly our country was in a huge economic mess when President Obama took ...See More

Thomas C Tucker

Thomas C Tucker Let's be real America turning the economy is like turning a ship, slow and steady. President Obama is no miracle worker. He was sent to give us with a vision to give us guidance and to lead us, The United ...See More

Steve McLaughlin

Steve McLaughlin Honesty and integrity

Jay DuVarney

Jay DuVarney Trying to solve complex issues Calm, reasoned, non-reactionary decision making Equality for women, for minorities Social issues foreign policy that recognizes that the world has changed - no more cowboy George To fight obstructionists health care for all not so ...See More

Sammie Rabb

Sammie Rabb After the Bush years ------------------ect.......

Will Cannon

Will Cannon Because I believe it's time for the super rich to pay their fair share to help the economy.

Robin Thomas

Robin Thomas He is cleaning up someone else's mess and check it out we are a lot better off now then before look at the stock market and housing anyone who can't see that is just blind or maybe just stupid and ...See More

Dee Earles

Dee Earles Romney lies even to his rich friends.

Jeffery Smith

Jeffery Smith It's the surplus stupid. Many companies are just sitting on tons of dough.

Wilson Johnson

Wilson Johnson Best man for the job with a proven track record

Lelani Fryfogle

Lelani Fryfogle It was a Repub who fot us into this fiscal mess !!

David Hess

David Hess When President Obama took office we here in america were left in financial ruin, Bush completely destroyed our economy, Bush waged 2 wars that were unnesessary, banks went crazy, millions of people lost jobs, everything put on the american credit ...See More

Rini Hara

Rini Hara We are in the current situation because of trickle down economics and govnt cutbacks. More of what got us into trouble will not help. The stimulus prevented a freefall and Obama saved the auto industry

Edwin Addison

Edwin Addison He needs a second term to get it all done. He came in when the economy was already messed up. I say we give him a second term to see what he can accomplish. Romney wouldn't be able to do ...See More

Deanna Middleton Robinson

Deanna Middleton Robinson I think he is leading us in the right direction. He needs a democratic congress to g and senate to get things done.

Patricia Wexler

Patricia Wexler Obama said it would take two terms Just like Romney said

Tzymotraklim Jorkzinw

Tzymotraklim Jorkzinw Mitt only wants to make the rich richer and thus himself richer. He cares nothing about how he leaves America.

Kewan L Woodard

Kewan L Woodard Because he's very honest about it .

Anupa Murali

Anupa Murali President Obama has rescued the country from one of the worst economic havocs inflicted by 8 years of Republican adventurism. We still have a long way to go to reach the golden period of President Clinton. We cannot afford to ...See More

AmandaKay Schraufnagel Mazurkiewicz

AmandaKay Schraufnagel Mazurkiewicz The economy collapsed under the Bush Presidency and Mitt Romney has hired the old Bush team to be his advisers. He cannot run our country like a business he does not have the right to exile or fire states who ...See More

Jerry Ez

Jerry Ez Would be better if GOP didn't OBSTRUCT & Stagnate JOBS! By the way, Where are those GOP Jobs they promised as First priority?

Judy Bergquist

Judy Bergquist obama is the abraham lincoln of our time

Blossom Bradley

Blossom Bradley because he has a plan to continue moving forward, rather than going back to the same policies tried in the bush years. you know, the ones that got us in this mess to begin with. why would anyone vote for ...See More

Patricia Wexler

Patricia Wexler He understands the peoples need and handdling middle east not Romney he keeps putting his foot in his mouth. OBAMA knows whats best for the USA I vote Obama

Mike Johnson

Mike Johnson Romney can not be trusted to like after the people.

J Diego Chong

J Diego Chong Romney will just syphon more money from the economy with tax breaks for the wealthy who have proven they will not invest their profits in America, creating more jobs for the unemployed.

Listiel Rock

Listiel Rock He knows the US economy is not a business and can't be run like a business. His focus is people first.

Steve Kelley

Steve Kelley We have seen Mitt's economic prowess in Ma ... Really, 49 in job creation

Joe Borawski

Joe Borawski The economy has clearly begun to move in the right direction. Even with more filibusters than any previous three presidents have received, Obama has still managed to get the economy back up on its feet.

Eric OccupyChicago Roberts

Eric OccupyChicago Roberts The economy has grown, albeit, not as fast as i would like, no thanks to the obstructionism and partisan politics of Romney's cohorts. A Romney Ryan presidency would bring us back to the same failed policies that got into this ...See More

Fred Valdez

Fred Valdez He has a better handle of the economy

Patrick Ciriello

Patrick Ciriello Mr. Romney knows how to destroy companies. Not exactly what I would want on my resume.

Joe Buegler

Joe Buegler Obama keeps his money in American banks not hide it in foreign banks where it does nothing for the U.S.A economy. If Romney has nothing to hide then he should show his past tax returns. You can fool some of ...See More

Denise Oliver-Velez

Denise Oliver-Velez The President rescued the auto industry, and has a vision and plan for green jobs.

Martin Chiaravalloti

Martin Chiaravalloti Helping those who don't need help (the 1%) does nothing to help those that do (the 99%).

Kacey Rajkovich

Kacey Rajkovich The only man that will tax American s to get tax revenue to reduce the federal deficit and to maintain the much needed social programs. "We're in this together." - Bill Clinton

Celia Key

Celia Key In handling the situation he faced,, Obama prevent aa depression, don't trust Romney's policies

Wayne A. Morris

Wayne A. Morris It's 'We the People,' not bottom-line.

JeaGloris Powell

JeaGloris Powell For the REPUBLICANS TO CLAIM THAT THEY CAN FIX THE ECONOMY THAT THEY TANKED FOR POLITICAL GAIN,YOU HAVE TO BE KIDDING ME! PRESIDENT OBAMA IS AND WILL CONTINUE TO BE THE GUY TO GET THIS ECONOMY BACK RIGHT. WE ARE ...See More

Jim Carter

Jim Carter He understands the issues

Sam Lehman

Sam Lehman Romney is used to cutting jobs from his time at Bain Capital. Deregulation and low upper tax rates is EXACTLY how we got into this mess, but no, when the republicans, tank the economy, expect Obama to fix it completely, ...See More

Karen Wiggins

Karen Wiggins I TRUST THIS PRESIDENT BECAUSE OF HIS HONESTY,PASSION,HARDWORKING,JUDGEMENT,AND LOVE FOR THE AMERICAN PEOPLE....UNLIKE ROMNEY, WHO'S A FAIL GOV.AND NEVER WAS A SENATOR,JUST A BUSINESS MAN WORKING FOR THE RICH !! BECAUSE HE IS RICH.

Donna Gorman

Donna Gorman Because he views a winning economy as one that is more fair and balanced.

Ted Graves

Ted Graves The Presidents job on the economy has been stellar. I know it is cliche but you have to take into account what he inherited. And tell me, what the heck is wrong with government jobs? Jobs that include teachers, fire ...See More

Toni Csargo

Toni Csargo It took us many years to get into this mess.....we need to stay the course to get out of it

Peter D. Van Vorous

Peter D. Van Vorous Republican Congress is obstructionist. They have become dangerous idealgogues..intent on ruining the entire safety net for the poor, indigent and the weakest of society. Bullys need to be stood up to!

Gladstone Harrison

Gladstone Harrison The right wing party is hindering progress

Angel Lee

Angel Lee Get the tea party and the GOP out of Congress and you'll say what jobs can be created. GET RID OF THE OBSTRUCTIONIST.

Mark Simpkins

Mark Simpkins Things are better than they were 4yrs ago. There is a world wide depression/recession and it will take time to complete the recovery. There is no historical evidence that the republican policies work. It is wishful thinking that giving more ...See More

Josh Thorns

Josh Thorns what is better creating an average of 139,000 jobs or loosing 750,000 jobs. mitt romneys plan is either unknown or not diff from bush period

Robert Smith

Robert Smith If you call being a corporate raider being qualified. Then Romney is your man for the job.

Robert Smith

Robert Smith If you call being a corporate raider being qualified. Then Romney is your man for the job.

Patrick David Kalie

Patrick David Kalie We need to stop the lies that say that Obama has not created jobs. For a while we have had job growth. I have family who was hired because of it.

Barbara Jones Hatcher

Barbara Jones Hatcher The right thing to do. Jobs are more than jobs--they are networks of interconnected people.

Pramod Banavar

Pramod Banavar Give him a chance

Donna M Crane

Donna M Crane He has tried to fix the economy, and had considerable success considering where we were 4 years ago. He has done it in spite of absolute stonewalling by the Republican Party representatives.

Harold Troger

Harold Troger The Romney Ryan plan will raise the deficit and shrink the economy causing the next great depression. If a republican congress digs in their heels we will stay in the recession longer . Historically no different from what the Republicans ...See More

David Wright

David Wright After eight years of fighting two wars leading to economic collapse of the nation the president ( Obama ) came to office to inherit these problems which were created by the previous administration led by the G O P similar ...See More

Fary Dangaly

Fary Dangaly History prove that Democrat are always better for the Economy

Jane Davis

Jane Davis Mitt Romney would drive the economy below what Bush drove it to. Obama knows the situation. Not his fault. He is doing everything he can do.

Yannick Luce Yambaka

Yannick Luce Yambaka President Obama has been trying and it has not been a walk in the park with those Republicans.

Karla Walker

Karla Walker I have lived this economic downturn in more ways than one and I KNOW I am better off today than I was 4 years ago. I support our President completely!

Robert Warner

Robert Warner Romney is truly a "turnaround artist" all right. Turned his back on his own country and put his wads of cash in Swiss Banks and Caymen Island tax evasion schemes while he destroyed american companies by loadind them with debt ...See More

Jason Safford

Jason Safford Yeah - I think I will stick with the In-Sourcer who saved GM than the outsourcer who took profits on Out-Sourcing people's livelihoods.

Michaelle Michelle Marks

Michaelle Michelle Marks Well all you that are so good at MATHEMATICS......"lets really do the math" When President Obama took office we were LOSING 700,000 jobs a month(and by the way this was already going on). Over 29 months at that pace...... 20,300,000 ...See More

Deena Sortland

Deena Sortland He cares about all of our people Not Just those on top of the financial pile.

Ja Lo

Ja Lo Made in USA matters.

Mak Freeze

Mak Freeze Romney is a pure capitalist with no brakes or regards to someone else. His goal is to make a buck and put it away and hell with the rest, He is a vulture!

Muthu Ganapathy

Muthu Ganapathy Our economy is improving, we're gaining jobs. Though the recovery is slow, it's improving.

Joshua Schultz

Joshua Schultz President Obama has already made a lot of progress. No we are not where we need to be, but considering what he was given to work with he did well. NO One would have done a fantastic job with the ...See More

Craig Browning

Craig Browning It's far more humane and filled with foresight when it comes to building a strong and productive America.

Paul Davis

Paul Davis For 8 years Bush drove this country into the ground it would be crazy to give them a second chance

Dan McIntyre

Dan McIntyre History shows us that republican beliefs and action have gotten us into our present mess.

Sean Conner

Sean Conner Arithmetic.

Shari Turner

Shari Turner Congress is to blame for the economic mess. If they had approved Obama's jobs bills we would be much farther along than we are now. He's only one man. He needs the teams of Reps and Senators to step up ...See More

Anna Neaphyte

Anna Neaphyte There are 3 million jobs available right now for which training is required. Romney lives in rose-colored hindsight, while America is moving forward whether he likes it or not. Also, nothing good was ever built on fear. I resent his ...See More

Jay Staxx Sr.

Jay Staxx Sr. Congress stifled the Jobs Bill set forth by President Obama that would have put Americans back to work rebuilding our countries crumbling infrastructure. There must be compromise in Washington before we give President Obama a grade of incomplete.

Ruhy Bremen

Ruhy Bremen I do not trust Ramney.

Robert Merle Dane

Robert Merle Dane Romney has a lot of venture capital experience it's true. But that does not translate to running the Executive Office. Why won't he run on his government experience? In any case, Obama has 4 years more experience leading this country ...See More

Perry Ward

Perry Ward I believe the Bush Republican tax cuts and lack of corporate oversight got us into this mess. I believe that a fair tax code based on all monies earned, regardless of method, and reasonable government oversight and regulation are the ...See More

Faye Davis

Faye Davis If not for the Republicans blocking everything the economy would be in better shape!

Mark Thompson

Mark Thompson After a terrible blow that left the economy in the worse shape since the Great Depression, President Obama has done a great job in keeping America from going into a Depression. In addition, job growth and other economic factors are ...See More

Paul Gray

Paul Gray Romney has said nothing about how he will help the desperate condition of average Americans - nothing.

Kathleen Sawyer

Kathleen Sawyer we were in free fall when Obama took office. If it was left to someone else we would not have an auto industry today.

Michael Roberto

Michael Roberto Because I will trust a self made man who rose from nothing to become President over a privleged well connected insider who served one term as a govenor, left the state in ruin, and then runs away from the only ...See More

Jeff Bunting

Jeff Bunting Obama's plans to fix this economy have been working but at a painfully slow rate thans to the republican plan to obstruct any form of progress through the filibuster.

Sage Keramet Bellamy

Sage Keramet Bellamy The job market is getting better thanks to the plans that he has put in

Mike Askme

Mike Askme because i do not trust Romney on anything and he will do what is best for Romney not the average guy

Denis Coughlin

Denis Coughlin The raider of pension funds is hardly a choice to be untrusted with our nations future.

Lueen Jodoin

Lueen Jodoin The jobs picture wasn't going to change overnight. The big picture is determined by the economics of the Nation. That takes time to rebuild and is not wholely controlled by the President. There are many other factions of goverment to ...See More

Meies Matz

Meies Matz Because regardless of my political ideology, Romney will gut the very framework that built the country. My vote is for Obama

Richard Salim Rawson

Richard Salim Rawson It's the tax cut for the rich that has strangled the growth of jobs and production.

Terrie Miller

Terrie Miller Bush tax cuts and other GOP policies put the economy in the mess it is in. Why give the GOP the chance to do more harm!

Steve Huff

Steve Huff Romney has shown he's good at investing very little, borrowing millions from others, saddling companies with that enormous loan debt, offering very little in terms of expertise that would help a company turn around, and then pay himself millions in ...See More

Herb Lesser

Herb Lesser republicans only have their money interest at heart.

Stephen Kraut

Stephen Kraut The Republican solution to the economy, tax cuts for the rich and trickle down benefits, has a proven and repeated track record of failure.

Truscha Quatrone

Truscha Quatrone Mitt Romney has not put forth any plan on how he will create jobs. Giving tax breaks to the wealthy and corporations has proven not to work. If the GOP had approved done jobs bill put forth by the President ...See More

Kathleen Nelson

Kathleen Nelson I cannot trust the Romney team for the Economy as he flip-flops on everything. I cannot bring myself to trust this man. After seeing all his lies so far, would you trust him? I believe he will just do the ...See More

Scott Alber

Scott Alber From the time John McCain "suspended" his campaign to fly back to Washington to handle the financial crisis himself I realized Barack Obama had a much better understanding of the crisis. McCain's stunt caused a dangerous and confidence destroying delay ...See More

Al Reiner

Al Reiner another lie; ryan now admits he fudged his marathon times,plant closure, conversion of medicare to private voucher,and how he sabatoged the budjet group, at least he lies,not like the king of flip floppers romney. When will he release his long ...See More

Sue Dietz

Sue Dietz How is it We the People forget how the economy got this way? Listen up People know your facts...do not listen to the attack ads..do your own research...do not depend on others to do it for you!!!!!!!!!

Michael Petersen

Michael Petersen Trickle down and supply side economics is a major cause of the rich getting richer while the poor get poorer.

Sheri Rhodes

Sheri Rhodes Has everyone forgotten what a disaster our economy was in when Obama took office. Folks we were drowning!! And we would have seen times as in the past with the great depresion without his courage to make things right. Don't ...See More

Dawana Lee

Dawana Lee Its all about the future and I believe Obama has the best policies to see that thru.

Darlene Williams

Darlene Williams The vision for a thriving economy that President Obama has presented is one that will produce results provided he gets the support needed to carry it out.

Joan Hyde

Joan Hyde He is, as he said he would be, the President of all Americans. He has done as he said he would as long as the Congress would let him. He is an honorable man who does not tell lies to ...See More

Jane M Comer

Jane M Comer Running the country for the good of all citizens is not the equivalent of making a profit. The country is not a business. The country is for the public good.

Michael Ramey

Michael Ramey I am a college instructor and therefore living within the 99%. I have no choice, since R&R only support their richest of friends and contributors.

Robert J Stedman

Robert J Stedman He has turned the economy around it you look at the detaila on Romneys'plan it will return to the Bush policies and return to a depression. Check the facts by the top economists.

Edna M. Rankine

Edna M. Rankine I hear promises no plans from Romney...

Michael Rubin

Michael Rubin The republicans still have no agenda for improving the economy other than tax cuts for the wealthy

Derick Choi

Derick Choi Because Republicans don't know how macroeconomics work.

Sharhonda Thomas

Sharhonda Thomas He's the only one who can help boost the economy and put Americans back to work.

Juan Israel

Juan Israel It took 8 years to turn Bill Clinton's surplus into a deficit. It will take at least 4 more years to continue to slowly fix what Bush screwed up. Despite the obstructions of the GOP in the house the economy ...See More

Richard O'Neal Emanuel Jr.

Richard O'Neal Emanuel Jr. It took 8 years for GW Bush to screw the economy up. Granted he was managing 2 wars, but hey it is what it is. Despite all the obstructionism in the Congress and Senate, the economy although struggling, is beginning ...See More

Nancy Rayne

Nancy Rayne Bush politics caused the crash. Trickle-down economics never worked. President Obama did not lose those jobs. The previous administration did.

Ray Barnes

Ray Barnes THAT LIAR ryan SAID LAST NIGHT THT THE GM PLANT IN JANESVILLE, WISCONSIN, CLOSED UNDER THE PRESIDENT... NO !!!! IT CLOSED IN MAY 2008, BEFORE THE ELECTION OF 2008, UNDER THE WAR CRIMINAL bush, ryan IS AN OUTRIGHT LIAR !!!!!!!!!!!! ...See More

Jennifer Bierbaum

Jennifer Bierbaum Even though the republicans have done nothing to help, Obama can still be a boss and help us out.

Ricardo Rojas

Ricardo Rojas Without any support from the Republican congress his Administration has nonetheless maintained the economy from falling completely apart whereas the GDP has grown slowly but steadily. And Dept of Labor statistics show employment growth over the last two and half ...See More

Jeffrey Holmes

Jeffrey Holmes i believe given the chance President Obama can change things around. It pains me .to see he's gone through so much resistance in Washington.

Patty Scott Miller

Patty Scott Miller Because it's improving.

Ford Fowler

Ford Fowler trickle down doesn't work.

Reba Dubay

Reba Dubay He inherited the price tag for Bush's unnecessary 8 year long war in Iraq. Stupid Romney supporters forget that the deficit they keep screaming about now INCLUDES that price tag thanks to their hero, George Bush.

Danny Lee

Danny Lee History shows the reason.

Anthony M Battista

Anthony M Battista Republicans lie!

Orlena Joyce Sizemore

Orlena Joyce Sizemore for the last two years the senate and house has stood in the way. i blame them for things not being better not Obama

Melody Goad

Melody Goad President Obama could have accomplished more if he did not have the Party of NO obstructing everything!

Melody Goad

Melody Goad President Obama could have accomplished more if he did not have the Party of NO obstructing everything!

Beverly Granison

Beverly Granison because it will take longer than three years to get us out of this mess that bush left for president obama to fix ,in his second term it will get done.

Jason Varner

Jason Varner I do not agree with subsidies or many of the methods President Obama has employed in order to jump start our economy; however, given the dilapidated state our economy was in following President Bush I understand his urgency to implement ...See More

The Republican economic approach is what created the most recent economic problems.

Jaime Burton

Jaime Burton I think he is trying to bring back the economy I hope he does more in his second term

Dan Hess

Dan Hess The problem with President Obama's stimulus package wasn't that it cost too much, it was that it wasn't big ENOUGH. We should be using government funds to get people jobs repairing our ancient power grids and abysmal transportation network. Improves ...See More

Alexa Racheé Patrice Watkins

Alexa Racheé Patrice Watkins He's seen and experienced both the good and the bad sides of the economy, so he has the best understanding of the economy as a whole.

Ben Hill

Ben Hill Romney is an idiot or just greedy. I'm not sure.

Testy John

Testy John he is a precident for all the people , not only for richi richs......

Louie Pittarelli

Louie Pittarelli Obama is trying to stimulate the economy and has put forth a plan to do so. Romney just talks about how he's done "turnarounds" in the past, without clarifying how exactly he plans to turn around the economy of an ...See More

Gary James

Gary James Cutting spending without increasing taxes, especially on corporations and the top 1 percent is ludicrous. And you have to "Spend money to make money" And President Obama already has been able to do quite a bit will constantly being obstructed ...See More

Diane Collins

Diane Collins Because President Obama makes sense.

Victoria Stith

Victoria Stith increase transitional housing, halfway housing offerning services in mental health, health & nutrition. job training then matching them with companies or trade of profession. This will increase our economy. long-term in-patient programs for single men, women and families with children ...See More

Lisa Novotny

Lisa Novotny More of his focus will be on what's best for average Americans

Bobbi Cee

Bobbi Cee Romney is not part of the problem, he IS the problem.

Chynna Rolland

Chynna Rolland We were on a precipice about to fall when Obama took over. Now the reublicans want us to believe that the same policies that got us in this mess will get us out. I will not buy a bag of ...See More

Linda Allred Holmstrom

Linda Allred Holmstrom Why would we put the same people who caused this crisis back in charge. Are we really that dumb?

Clément Chevalier

Clément Chevalier President Obama has kept the United States from falling apart financially. He inherited a mess from W. Bush, and has taken steps to bring the economy back.

Terrill Wolfe

Terrill Wolfe Simple Romney will do the same thing every Republican has done since Reagan. Cut taxes on the wealthiest among us. Cut infrastructure cost, and reduce services and benefits to the rest of us. Because this plan has worked so well ...See More

Pam Miner

Pam Miner I feel much safer with Obama's policy.

Frank Robert

Frank Robert Without going into detail....I just do

Spot Ify

Spot Ify It's going to take more than 4 yrs to undo the damage that Republicans did to the economy with Iraq and tax cuts for the rich.

Srinadh Godavarthy

Srinadh Godavarthy We could have easily had another Great depression had we followed Romney/Ryan plan. Tax cuts would have made matter worse. Obama has brought us from disaster to a better place where economy is growing with 4,000,000 new jobs created since. ...See More

Michael Martin

Michael Martin Because I understand that our economic problems are systemic, not based on individual issues, like Mitt Romney would have us believe. Romney has contributed to outsourcing American jobs and will only accelerate the process as President.

Jack Kimball

Jack Kimball Because I pay attention

D-Faried Ahmed

D-Faried Ahmed A President of all the people, not just the well-heeled, well-connected, country-club elite.

Henry Exhaust

Henry Exhaust Romney has eyes and pocketbooks only for the .01%

Mary Gannon Stolle

Mary Gannon Stolle The Republican Party has obstructed every measure the Democrats and the President have supported, many of which included Republican policies. The Republicans created this mess with their free-market/no regulation mindset, as well as their "lower taxes will create jobs" mentality. ...See More

Mark Gruszka

Mark Gruszka He has the right plans but again the GOP have blocked his plan, it's time to block the GOP.

RickandCarol Fidler

RickandCarol Fidler If it hadn't been for the GOP obstructionism we would be well on our way to prosperity for all not just the Rich.

Hussein M. Ali

Hussein M. Ali Bailed out American GM

Mistr Ydobon

Mistr Ydobon Romney's plan is to put the failed economic policy of the Bush administration on steroids. Bush's policy was a disaster. Romney's would be a disaster on steroids.

Michelle Robinson

Michelle Robinson The stimulus wasn't big enough! It was strangled in the cradle, and now these same con artists who strangled it want to point to the fact that it "didn't work" as a failure of Obama's economic policies. Romney's policy is ...See More

Sydna Taylor

Sydna Taylor I agree with Jean Naggar. We need people in office willing to work with others. The President is willing so the problem is Congress.

Jean Naggar

Jean Naggar I do not beleive in tricle down economy

Raymond Honeycutt

Raymond Honeycutt Stimulus spending on the part of this administration has kept the Great Recession from turning into the 2nd Great Depression. We have had steady, albeit slow job growth since June of 2009. I do not want to give the keys ...See More

Patty Wright

Patty Wright You can't get out of a mess like this in 4 years. It's like a credit card, easy to create the bill and hard to pay it off. I'd rather have jobs stay in the USA than have Romney help ...See More

Bob Wilkes

Bob Wilkes during the bush years we were leveraged to the hilt, someone has to pay the bills.

Calvin Price

Calvin Price Romney-Ryan ticket doesn't have a clue. Will someone PLEASE tell them we tried their recycled ideas during the Reagan-Bush I era and it obviously does not work.

Jay Adams-Feuer

Jay Adams-Feuer Because history has proven that Reaganomics don't work.

Chris Miller

Chris Miller Supply side only economics haven't worked. Regan was a saint compared to these new republicans. They need to tax incomes over million what they were before bush lowered and have shared sacrifice( subsidies . tax loopholes hey Romney and Of ...See More

Hanns Barker

Hanns Barker Once again, I trust Obama,especially when it comes to keeping jobs at home and making incentives to lure jobs back from overseas. I am pro Labor and so is the president! The president saved the American auto industry and about ...See More

Ellen Gallagher

Ellen Gallagher he has the interest of the American people foremost.

Sharon Cohen

Sharon Cohen Trickle down economics does not work. We tried it under GW. It didn't work then and it would not work now.

Elaine Bishop

Elaine Bishop Romney has raped enough people lives while moving companies to other countries and turned his own profits.

Solja Itstrue

Solja Itstrue The President has made remarkable steps towards our full recovery, even in the face of historical obstructionism. If the Republican Party had their way, the USA would be in a deep, deep depression. The President believes, as do I, that ...See More

Carlton Goodwin

Carlton Goodwin This is a no brainer. I prefer Obama's approach on taxes, decreasing income inequality, corporate foreign income re-capture, striving for growth in employment , and sensible natural resouce policies , etc.

Tonya Michaels

Tonya Michaels Who drives the economy? Who are the real job creators? Who are the folks who got us into this mess in the first place and then we paid them big bonuses because "they were the only ones who knew how ...See More

Preeti Daya

Preeti Daya How is Romney going to create 12million jobs? Is he going to continue to give tax benefits to the rich?

Mary Ann Hovis

Mary Ann Hovis I don't trust Romney/Ryan to protect Medicare. And, I don't think they will trample on women's rights.

Georgie Perez

Georgie Perez He took this country in bad shape, slowly but things are picking up why change

Dennis Gates

Dennis Gates It's obvious, Obama wants the super rich to pay their part

Rupert Schmitt

Rupert Schmitt If Obama had not been blocked the unenployment rate would be much lower.

Mitch Schoonover

Mitch Schoonover Considering what he was given and the actions/inactions of our Congress, President Obama is doing the job we need him to do and will continue to. We are one of the last "industrialized" nations in the world that does not ...See More

Theodore F Vick

Theodore F Vick Romey's policies have cost us jobs by OUT SOURCING

Ron Lebresh

Ron Lebresh the alternitive of romneys endoresment of ryan budget would be a disater.

Marissa Berrier

Marissa Berrier Stimulus packages have historically worked, just look at the New Deal.

Skye Griffith

Skye Griffith I believe he has the interest of working folks such as myself in better perspective.

S.k. Rheinhardt

S.k. Rheinhardt I disagree with Mitt Romney's general approach to economic issues. The tremendous wealth redistribution over the past 30 years (started by Reagan's "trickle down" economics" would continue, and excellerate under a Romney administration.

Jeff Egan

Jeff Egan I don't like either candidate. It I know what to expect from Obama. Romney talks like a throw back to trickle down economics.

Richard Hodapp

Richard Hodapp How much trickle down economics did Romney contribute to? with billions in the bank and over seas how many jobs did he create and yet he pays less than half of the taxes we do on money he made on ...See More

Abby Mills

Abby Mills One of the primary issues fueling the instability of the American economy is appaling inequality that has been allowed to widen dramatically over the course of the last several decades. We have seen this happen before. It ended badly. Let's ...See More

Susan Lester

Susan Lester I do NOT believe in trickle down. The problem is not one that can be solved by giving rich people more money or incentivizing corporations with lowered tax rates. Demand has been soft and it needs government intervention. Obama's way ...See More

William D Weathers

William D Weathers Against great odds Mr. Obama is making a difference and will make an even better impact when we give him better support and less talk!

Rebecca Myers

Rebecca Myers I know not everyone agrees with me, but looking back to the 1930s depression, I believe we should have spent and be spending more to stimulate the economy. I don't agree with all of the deficit reduction. When you provide ...See More

Brian L. Baker

Brian L. Baker The economy was on the way down, fast, when he became President. I had already been laid off in the last months of the Bush Presidency, and while I am still underemployed in 2 minimum wage jobs, the professional job ...See More

Roger Kent Kirchner

Roger Kent Kirchner Had Congress cooperated, the economy would have improved more quickly. Returning to the previous administration's policies would further exacerbate the mess they created.

Sandra Singer

Sandra Singer President Obama inherited a Wall Street meltdown and an expensive useless war from former President Bush. Despite all this mess, he has still managed to do more for our economic situation in this country than I believe Romney ever will.See More

Tom Schmidt

Tom Schmidt Because America's 40 top economists believe Keynesian economics is the correct solution for our economy. And worse, Romney's advisor Wissert, was voted the stupidest economist in America by his peers.

Brian Lehto

Brian Lehto Beause tax cuts for the rich do not create jobs. And Austerity is not the answer to a depression. It is stimulus.

Shaun Dakin

Shaun Dakin Because he will give me tons of stuff I didn't work for or ask for ;) !

Kenneth Head

Kenneth Head Mostly because HE ACTUALLY HAS A PLAN. i could list a million other reasons but i think that alone is a deal breaer.

Shelia Anderson

Shelia Anderson He is cleaning up the mess left by someone else.

Wendy McNeil

Wendy McNeil He understands the stresses of the common man and he knows what is fair.

Sheila M. Sikorski

Sheila M. Sikorski I endorse President Barack Obama because his economic plans have attempted to bolster all of the American people, not just the so-called "job creators." I believe in government stimulus to help stabilize the economy until people get back to work. ...See More

Christine Richard

Christine Richard Hi perseverance and ability to see the big picture when dealing with the issues we are currently facing. He doesn't favor the wealthy over the little guy!!!

Obama's Statements (1224)

January 17, 2010
Because I don’t need to tell you we're in tough times right now.  We’re still dealing with an economic crisis unlike any that we’ve seen since the Great Depression.  It’s done a lot of damage to so many people.  And even before that storm hit with its full fury, middle-class families were weathering tough economic times, throughout this past decade, working harder and harder just to keep up.  So people are frustrated and they're angry, and they have every right to be.  I understand.  Because progress is slow, and no matter how much progress we make, it can’t come fast enough for the people who need help right now, today. 
Request a Fact Check
January 17, 2010
Let me just say, by the way, because you'll hear a lot of stuff about taxes.  You always do, every election. Last year, I kept a campaign promise to cut taxes for 95 percent of working Americans.    Cut taxes.  And these members of Congress right here voted to cut taxes here in the commonwealth not just for individuals, but also for small businesses.  We cut taxes for middle-class families.  That was part of the Recovery Act.    Now, you better check  under the hood -- because from everything I see, Martha’s opponent would have voted against those taxes -- he would have voted against those tax cuts.  Would have voted against those tax cuts.
Request a Fact Check
January 17, 2010
Now, Massachusetts, we have had one year to make up for eight.  It hasn’t been quick.  It hasn’t been easy.  But we've begun to deliver on the change you voted for.  I mean, think about it, what some of these members that I just talked about have done, what we've done just over the last several months.  We've started to see the economy grow again.  We've given tax cuts to small businesses.  We're forcing the banks finally to start lending again on Main Street, and not just worried about profits.  We've made sure that police officers and teachers and critical workers across this commonwealth haven't been laid off. But we've got so much more work to do.  So many families are out there hurting.
Request a Fact Check
January 17, 2010
And if you do that, if you do that, if you are willing not only to cast your vote for Martha Coakley, but if you're willing to get out the vote for Martha Coakley -- then you won’t just win this election.  You will carry on the best, progressive, forward-looking values of this proud commonwealth and send a leader to Washington who is going to work tirelessly every single day to turn this economy around, to move this country forward, and to keep the American Dream alive in our time and for all time. 
Request a Fact Check
January 20, 2010
That's exactly what the memorandum I'm issuing today is meant to do.  I'm directing my budget office, together with the Treasury Department and other federal agencies, to take steps to block contractors who are seriously delinquent in their taxes from receiving new government contracts.  I'm also directing the IRS to conduct a review of the overall accuracy of companies' claims about tax delinquencies.  We need to be sure that when a company says it's paying taxes, that company is, in fact, paying taxes.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
And that's why, even as we worked to rescue our broader economy last year, we took some steps to help.  We cut taxes, as Joe mentioned, for workers and small businesses.  We extended unemployment insurance and health benefits for those who lost their jobs.  We provided aid to local governments so you could keep essential services running and keep cops and firefighters and teachers who make your cities safe places to grow and to learn on your payroll.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
Last month, I announced some additional targeted steps to spur private sector hiring and boost small businesses by building on the tax cuts in the Recovery Act and increasing access to the loans they desperately need to grow.  I said we'd rebuild and modernize even more of our transportation and communication networks across the country, in addition to the infrastructure projects that are already scheduled to come online this year.  I called for the extension of emergency relief to help hurting Americans who've lost their jobs.  And you can expect a continued, sustained and relentless effort to create good jobs for the American people.  I will not rest until we've gotten there. 
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
This economic crisis began as a financial crisis, when banks and financial institutions took huge, reckless risks in pursuit of quick profits and massive bonuses.  When the dust settled, and this binge of irresponsibility was over, several of the world's oldest and largest financial institutions had collapsed, or were on the verge of doing so.  Markets plummeted, credit dried up, and jobs were vanishing by the hundreds of thousands each month. We were on the precipice of a second Great Depression.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
To avoid this calamity, the American people -- who were already struggling in their own right -- were forced to rescue financial firms facing crises largely of their own creation.  And that rescue, undertaken by the previous administration, was deeply offensive but it was a necessary thing to do, and it succeeded in stabilizing the financial system and helping to avert that depression.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
Since that time, over the past year, my administration has recovered most of what the federal government provided to banks. And last week, I proposed a fee to be paid by the largest financial firms in order to recover every last dime.  But that's not all we have to do.  We have to enact common-sense reforms that will protect American taxpayers -– and the American economy -– from future crises as well.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
Now, limits on the risks major financial firms can take are central to the reforms that I've proposed.  They are central to the legislation that has passed the House under the leadership of Chairman Barney Frank, and that we're working to pass in the Senate under the leadership of Chairman Chris Dodd.  As part of these efforts, today I'm proposing two additional reforms that I believe will strengthen the financial system while preventing future crises.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
First, we should no longer allow banks to stray too far from their central mission of serving their customers.  In recent years, too many financial firms have put taxpayer money at risk by operating hedge funds and private equity funds and making riskier investments to reap a quick reward.  And these firms have taken these risks while benefiting from special financial privileges that are reserved only for banks.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
But these privileges were not created to bestow banks operating hedge funds or private equity funds with an unfair advantage.  When banks benefit from the safety net that taxpayers provide –- which includes lower-cost capital –- it is not appropriate for them to turn around and use that cheap money to trade for profit.  And that is especially true when this kind of trading often puts banks in direct conflict with their customers' interests.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
The fact is, these kinds of trading operations can create enormous and costly risks, endangering the entire bank if things go wrong.  We simply cannot accept a system in which hedge funds or private equity firms inside banks can place huge, risky bets that are subsidized by taxpayers and that could pose a conflict of interest.  And we cannot accept a system in which shareholders make money on these operations if the bank wins but taxpayers foot the bill if the bank loses.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
It's for these reasons that I'm proposing a simple and common-sense reform, which we're calling the "Volcker Rule" -- after this tall guy behind me.  Banks will no longer be allowed to own, invest, or sponsor hedge funds, private equity funds, or proprietary trading operations for their own profit, unrelated to serving their customers.  If financial firms want to trade for profit, that's something they're free to do.  Indeed, doing so –- responsibly –- is a good thing for the markets and the economy.  But these firms should not be allowed to run these hedge funds and private equities funds while running a bank backed by the American people.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
My message to members of Congress of both parties is that we have to get this done.  And my message to leaders of the financial industry is to work with us, and not against us, on needed reforms.  I welcome constructive input from folks in the financial sector.  But what we've seen so far, in recent weeks, is an army of industry lobbyists from Wall Street descending on Capitol Hill to try and block basic and common-sense rules of the road that would protect our economy and the American people.
Request a Fact Check
January 21, 2010
We've come through a terrible crisis.  The American people have paid a very high price.  We simply cannot return to business as usual.  That's why we're going to ensure that Wall Street pays back the American people for the bailout.  That's why we're going to rein in the excess and abuse that nearly brought down our financial system.  That's why we're going to pass these reforms into law.
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
I knew it would be unpopular -- and rightly so.  But I also knew that we had to do it because if they went down, your local banks would have gone down.  And if the financial system went down, it would have taken the entire economy and millions more families and businesses with it.  We would have looked -- we would have been looking at a second Great Depression.
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
So we said, if you're willing to take some tough and painful steps to make yourself more competitive, we're willing to invest in your future.  And earlier this week, we heard that the auto industry planned to make almost 3 million cars and trucks here in North America in the next three months, which is up 69 percent from the first three months of last year. 
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
We also passed a Recovery Act to pull our economy back from the brink.  Now, there's been a lot of misunderstanding about this Recovery Act.  Sherrod and Marcy and Betty and I were talking about this on the way over here.  If you ask the average person, what was the Recovery Act, the stimulus package, they'd say, "the bank bailout."  So let me just be clear here:  The Recovery Act was cutting taxes for 95 percent of working families -- 15 different tax cuts for working families, seven different tax cuts for small businesses so they can start up and grow and hire.  The Recovery Act was extending and increasing unemployment insurance and making COBRA available at a cheaper rate for people who had lost their jobs so they could keep their health care. 
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
Now, let me tell you why I did it.  I knew that insurance premiums had more than doubled in the past decade.  I knew that out-of-pocket expenses had skyrocketed.  I knew that millions more people had lost their insurance, and I knew that because of that economic crisis that was only going to get worse.  When you lose 7 million jobs, like we lost over the last two years, what do you think happens to those folks' health insurance?  What happens when their COBRA runs out?
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
I took this up because I wanted to ease the burdens on all the families and small businesses that can't afford to pay outrageous rates.  And I wanted to protect mothers and fathers and children by being targeted by some of the worst practices of the insurance industry that I had heard time and time again as I traveled through this country. 
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
So if I was trying to take the path of least resistance, I would have done something a lot easier.  But I'm trying to solve the problems that folks here in Ohio and across this country face every day.  And I'm not going to walk away just because it's hard.  We are going to keep on working to get this done -- with Democrats, I hope with Republicans -- anybody who's willing to step up.  Because I'm not going to watch more people get crushed by costs or denied care they need by insurance company bureaucrats.  I'm not going to have insurance companies click their heels and watch their stocks skyrocket because once again there's no control on what they do.
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
So long as I have some breath in me, so long as I have the privilege of serving as your President, I will not stop fighting for you.  I will take my lumps, but I won't stop fighting to bring back jobs here.    I won't stop fighting for an economy where hard work is rewarded.  I won't stop fighting to make sure there's accountability in our financial system.    I'm not going to stop fighting until we have jobs for everybody.
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
But it's going to be a fight.  You watch.  I guarantee you when we start on financial regulatory reform, trying to change the rules to prevent what has caused so much heartache all across the country, there are people who are goIng to say, "Why is he meddling in government -- why is meddling in the financial industry?  It's another example of Obama being big government."
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
Now, we're not going to make -- I want to be honest.  Not all the manufacturing jobs that have gone are going to come back.  And if people tell you they are, that's just not true -- because a lot of that has moved to places where the wages are just much lower.  And I know that some people say, well, then we should just set up tariffs so that folks can't ship them in.  But these days the economy, the global economy is so interconnected that that's just not a practical solution.
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
So what we've tried to do is to fill some of these gaps in the meantime.  For example, our small business lending through the SBA has actually gone up 70 percent.  And we've been waiving fees, increasing guarantees, and what we're trying to do is streamline the process for SBA loans because right now there's just too much paperwork.  It's typical government not having caught up with the 21st century.  And you can't have a 50-pound application form.  People just -- after a while, it's not worth it, in some cases.  So we're trying to do all those things.
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
So you've got all these insurance reforms that we're trying to get passed.  Now, some people ask, well, why don't you just pass that and forget everything else?  Here's the problem.  Let's just take the example of preexisting conditions.  We can't prohibit insurance companies from preventing people with preexisting conditions getting insurance unless everybody essentially has insurance.  And the reason for that is otherwise what would happen is people would just -- just wouldn't get insurance until they were sick and then they'd go and buy insurance and they couldn't be prohibited.  And that would drive everybody else's premiums up.
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
So the second thing we've been trying to do is to make sure that we're setting up an exchange, which is just a big pool so that people who are individuals, who are self employed, who are small business owners, they can essentially join a big pool of millions of people all across the country, which means that when you go to negotiate with your insurance company you've got the purchasing power of a Ford or a GM or Wal-Mart or a Xerox or the federal employees.  That's why federal employees have good insurance, and county employees and state employees have good insurance, in part is because they're part of this big pool.
Request a Fact Check
January 22, 2010
You asked about Social Security.  Let me talk about Medicare.  Medicare will be broke in eight years if we do nothing.  Right now we give -- we give about $17 billion in subsidies to insurance companies through the Medicare system -- your tax dollars.  But when we tried to eliminate them, suddenly there were ads on TV -- "Oh, Obama is trying to cut Medicare."  I get all these seniors writing letters:  "Why are you trying to cut my Medicare benefits?"  I'm not trying to cut your Medicare benefits.  I'm trying to stop paying these insurance companies all this money so I can give you a more stable program.
Request a Fact Check
January 25, 2010
Well, I wanted to stop by to comment on all the great work that the Middle Class Task Force is doing.  And you've just seen why Joe is the right person to do it.  No one brings to the table the same combination of personal experience and substantive expertise.  He's come a long way, and achieved incredible things along the ride, but he's never forgotten where he came from and his roots as a working-class kid from Scranton.  He's devoted his life to making the American Dream a reality for everyone –- because he's lived it.
Request a Fact Check
January 25, 2010
Now, we all know what that American Dream is.  It's the idea that in America we can make of our lives what we will.  It's the idea that if you work hard and live up to your responsibilities, you can get ahead -– and enjoy some of the basic guarantees in life:  A good job that pays a good wage, health care that'll be there when you get sick, a secure retirement even if you're not rich, an education that will give our kids a better life than we had.  They're very simple ideas.  But they're the ideas that are at the heart of our middle class –- the middle class that made the 20th century the American Century.
Request a Fact Check
January 25, 2010
For two years, Joe and I traveled this country and we heard stories that are all too familiar:  stories of Americans barely able to stay afloat despite working harder and harder for less; premiums that were doubling, tuition fees that were rising almost as fast; savings being used up, retirements put off, dreams put on hold.  That was all before the middle class got pounded by the full fury of the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.
Request a Fact Check
January 25, 2010
So we're going to keep fighting to rebuild our economy so that hard work is once again rewarded, wages and incomes are once again rising, and the middle class is once again growing.  And above all, we're going to keep fighting to renew the American Dream and keep it alive -- not just in our time, but for all time.
Request a Fact Check
January 25, 2010
Today the average debt of a graduating senior from college -- now, listen -- the average debt -- people of my generation -- the average debt is $23,000.  That is literally $2,000 more than my first house cost.  But in any standard, it's a lot of money -- average debt.  Some are graduating with a great deal more debt than that.
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
One year ago, I took office amid two wars, an economy rocked by a severe recession, a financial system on the verge of collapse, and a government deeply in debt.  Experts from across the political spectrum warned that if we did not act, we might face a second depression.  So we acted -– immediately and aggressively.  And one year later, the worst of the storm has passed.
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
But when I ran for President, I promised I wouldn't just do what was popular -– I would do what was necessary.  And if we had allowed the meltdown of the financial system, unemployment might be double what it is today.  More businesses would certainly have closed.  More homes would have surely been lost.
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
Now, let me repeat:  We cut taxes.  We cut taxes for 95 percent of working families.    We cut taxes for small businesses.  We cut taxes for first-time homebuyers.  We cut taxes for parents trying to care for their children.  We cut taxes for 8 million Americans paying for college. 
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
The plan that has made all of this possible, from the tax cuts to the jobs, is the Recovery Act.    That's right -– the Recovery Act, also known as the stimulus bill.    Economists on the left and the right say this bill has helped save jobs and avert disaster.  But you don't have to take their word for it.  Talk to the small business in Phoenix that will triple its workforce because of the Recovery Act.  Talk to the window manufacturer in Philadelphia who said he used to be skeptical about the Recovery Act, until he had to add two more work shifts just because of the business it created.  Talk to the single teacher raising two kids who was told by her principal in the last week of school that because of the Recovery Act, she wouldn't be laid off after all.
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
We should start where most new jobs do –- in small businesses, companies that begin when -- companies that begin when an entrepreneur -- when an entrepreneur takes a chance on a dream, or a worker decides it's time she became her own boss.  Through sheer grit and determination, these companies have weathered the recession and they're ready to grow.  But when you talk to small businessowners in places like Allentown, Pennsylvania, or Elyria, Ohio, you find out that even though banks on Wall Street are lending again, they're mostly lending to bigger companies.  Financing remains difficult for small businessowners across the country, even those that are making a profit.
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
So tonight, I'm proposing that we take $30 billion of the money Wall Street banks have repaid and use it to help community banks give small businesses the credit they need to stay afloat.   I'm also proposing a new small business tax credit -– one that will go to over one million small businesses who hire new workers or raise wages.    While we're at it, let's also eliminate all capital gains taxes on small business investment, and provide a tax incentive for all large businesses and all small businesses to invest in new plants and equipment. 
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
We can't afford another so-called economic "expansion" like the one from the last decade –- what some call the "lost decade" -– where jobs grew more slowly than during any prior expansion; where the income of the average American household declined while the cost of health care and tuition reached record highs; where prosperity was built on a housing bubble and financial speculation.
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
Now, the House has already passed financial reform with many of these changes.    And the lobbyists are trying to kill it.  But we cannot let them win this fight.    And if the bill that ends up on my desk does not meet the test of real reform, I will send it back until we get it right.  We've got to get it right. 
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
I know there have been questions about whether we can afford such changes in a tough economy.  I know that there are those who disagree with the overwhelming scientific evidence on climate change.  But here's the thing -- even if you doubt the evidence, providing incentives for energy-efficiency and clean energy are the right thing to do for our future -– because the nation that leads the clean energy economy will be the nation that leads the global economy.  And America must be that nation. 
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
Third, we need to export more of our goods.    Because the more products we make and sell to other countries, the more jobs we support right here in America.    So tonight, we set a new goal:  We will double our exports over the next five years, an increase that will support two million jobs in America.    To help meet this goal, we're launching a National Export Initiative that will help farmers and small businesses increase their exports, and reform export controls consistent with national security. 
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
Now, the price of college tuition is just one of the burdens facing the middle class.  That's why last year I asked Vice President Biden to chair a task force on middle-class families.  That's why we're nearly doubling the child care tax credit, and making it easier to save for retirement by giving access to every worker a retirement account and expanding the tax credit for those who start a nest egg.  That's why we're working to lift the value of a family's single largest investment –- their home.  The steps we took last year to shore up the housing market have allowed millions of Americans to take out new loans and save an average of $1,500 on mortgage payments.
Request a Fact Check
January 27, 2010
After nearly a century of trying -- Democratic administrations, Republican administrations -- we are closer than ever to bringing more security to the lives of so many Americans.  The approach we've taken would protect every American from the worst practices of the insurance industry.  It would give small businesses and uninsured Americans a chance to choose an affordable health care plan in a competitive market.  It would require every insurance plan to cover preventive care.
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
And Tampa, like so many communities across our country, has felt the lash of shuttered businesses and lost jobs and home foreclosures and vanished or dwindling savings.  And this storm came at the end of what some call a lost decade -- because what happened between 2000 and now, it was a decade in which paychecks shrank and jobs barely grew, and the costs of everything from health care to college education went up.  Irresponsibility from Wall Street to Washington left good, responsible Americans who did everything right still struggling in ways they never imagined.
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
Joe and I took office in the middle of this raging storm.  We ran for office, the highest office, because we had been hearing stories like this day in, day out, for years, even before the financial crisis hit.  So we're not going to rest until we rebuild an economy in which hard work and responsibility are rewarded, and businesses are hiring again, and wages are growing again, and the middle class can get its legs underneath it again.    We will not rest until we build an economy that's ready for America's future.
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
Now, to do that, the first thing we had to do was break the back of this recession.  And that required some tough, in some cases unpopular but unnecessary -- all which were necessary steps.  I mean -- I mentioned this last night -- none of us wanted to have to stabilize the banking sector, particularly since they helped create this mess.    But, as I explained last night, if we hadn't, the financial system literally could have melted down and that would have taken our entire economy and millions more families and businesses with it.
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
The true engines of job creation here in America are America's businesses.  And there are several steps we can take to help them expand and hire new workers.  Last night I proposed taking $30 billion of the money that went to Wall Street banks but have now been repaid and use it to help community banks give small businesses the credit they need to stay afloat.    That will help.  I also proposed a new tax credit for more than 1 million small businesses that hire new workers or raise wages.  And while we're at it, I believe that we should eliminate all capital gains taxes on small business investment, and provide a tax incentive for all businesses to invest in new plants and equipment. 
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
We won't stop fighting to spark innovation and ignite a clean energy economy where America's workers are building solar panels and wind towers and cutting-edge batteries for automobiles -- because the nation that leads the clean energy revolution will be the nation that leads the global economy.    And, as I said last night, other countries aren't waiting.  They want those jobs.  China wants those jobs.  Germany wants those jobs.  They are going after them hard, making the investments required.
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
I just want to be clear here, for the benefit of my friends in the back.    We need a strong financial sector.  Without it, businesses can't get capital to grow and create jobs.  Families can't finance a home loan or education.  So we want a healthy financial sector.  And there are folks all across the country working in banks who are doing great service to their community.  But we also need some rules of the road for Wall Street, so that reckless decisions made by a few don't take our economy over the side.    That's common sense.  There's nothing radical about that.  In fact, the banks should want it because it would create greater stability in the system.
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
And, yes, we will not stop fighting for a health care system that works for the American people, not just for the insurance industry.    We won't stop.  We want a system where you can't be denied care if you have a preexisting condition.    You can't get thrown off your insurance right at the time when you get seriously ill.  We want a system where small businesses can get insurance at a price they can afford. 
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
Nobody pays more than small businesses and individuals who are self-employed in the insurance market, because they've got no leverage.  We want to change that by allowing them to be able to set up a pool.  We want to make sure that people who don't have coverage can find an affordable choice in a competitive marketplace.    We want a system in which seniors don't have these huge gaps in their Medicare prescription drug coverage -- and where Medicare itself is on a sounder financial footing.  Those are the things that we're fighting for.
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
So that, you know, "you lose, I win" mentality, that mindset may be good for short-term politics, but it's not a mindset that's equal to these times.    It's not worthy of you.  What you deserve is for all of us, Democrats and Republicans, to work through our differences, overcome our politics, do what is hard, do what is necessary to advance the American Dream and keep it alive for our time and for all time. 
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
Well, this is a good question.  Look, first of all, you should be aware that we have increased SBA loans during the course of this year by 70 percent in some cases.  So some of the key programs for businesses like yours we have massively increased their lending.  And by the way, we've waived some of the fees and red tape that are associated with you getting a loan from the SBA.
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
Keep in mind, a small business loan of any sort, or a large business loan of any sort requires some sense of, all right, what's the business plan, what are your projected earnings, et cetera, et cetera.  And somebody has got to do that.  Now, if the SBA were to suddenly take over that entire function we'd have to stand up a massive bureaucracy -- a huge one.  And we'd have to train all those people and it would take too long, and you'd be frustrated -- why is it that this big government agency can't seem to run anything?
Request a Fact Check
January 28, 2010
Look, let me take the example of health care.  Part of the reason why it's so easy to scare people about health care, even if they don't like it the way it is now, is because you've got doctors, you've got nurses, you've got hospitals, you've got insurance systems, you've got Medicaid, you've got Medicare, you've got the VA system -- all these systems constitute several trillion dollars, one-sixth of our economy.  Even if you come up with a great plan that lowers premiums and creates greater competition and ensures freedom for you to choose your doctor and is bringing down the deficit -- all the things that I've claimed -- and prevents insurance companies from abusing customers -- even if we do all that, there's going to be somebody out there in a $2 trillion system who's unhappy with something.  Right?
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
And the fact is we're standing in a very different place than we were just a year ago.  Just last year, businesses were cutting 700,000 jobs per month.  The markets were plummeting.  Many people feared another Great Depression.  Today, we've stopped the flood of job losses, we've stabilized the financial system, and we can safely say that we've avoided that looming depression.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
We cut taxes for college students and first-time homebuyers and small businesses.  We made health insurance cheaper through COBRA.  So some of you know friends or family members who've lost their jobs but they kept their health insurance because COBRA was 65 percent cheaper than it would have otherwise been.  And we extended unemployment insurance for folks who have lost their jobs, including more than 200,000 people here in Maryland.  We've created and saved 2 million jobs.  That's 2 million teachers and firefighters, police officers, builders, manufacturing workers, and others who are on the job today because of some of the steps that we took.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
Now, even though the storms of the past two years are starting to lessen, the wreckage that's been left behind remains.  While the Recovery Act has created and saved 2 million jobs, this recession has cost us 7 million jobs.  So there's still a big gap -- still a big hole that we have to fill.  And it represents a terrible human tragedy, as families are thrown into hardship and uncertainty.  But the good news is, today's report means that we're increasing GDP, we're increasing economic growth.  That means businesses are going to start to see more customers, and hopefully even here at Chesapeake you might start seeing enough orders that you start needing to hire that extra shift.  That could make a big difference.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
Today, I'm proposing what I believe is the best way to cut taxes while promoting hiring by small businesses:  through a tax credit for companies that add workers or increase salaries this year.  Now is the perfect time for this kind of incentive because the economy is growing, but businesses are still hesitant to start hiring again.  The economy is growing, but job growth is lagging.  Companies are recovering but not yet taking that next step and taking on somebody full time.  And while businesses will always be the engines of job creation in this country, government can create the conditions for those businesses to expand and hire more workers.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
So this is a simple, easy to understand mechanism that will cut taxes for more than 1 million small businesses.  It'll give them an incentive to hire more people and a little bit of extra money to pay higher wages, to expand work hours, or invest in their company.  And in order to get this incentive working quickly, employers would actually be able to receive this money every quarter, as opposed to waiting a whole year to see it benefit their taxes.  So the Chesapeake Machine Company is a perfect example.  I understand, Terry, that you may be thinking about hiring a couple of new workers this year.  Well, this tax credit could help you do it and it would mean $5,000 per worker that you hire.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
Now, it's true that in some instances this tax credit will go to businesses that were going to hire folks anyway.  But then, it simply becomes a tax cut for small businesses that will spur investment and expansion.  And that's a good thing, too.  And that's why this type of tax cut is considered by economists -- who rarely agree on anything -- to be one of the most cost-effective ways of accelerating job growth, especially because we will include provisions to prevent people from gaming the system.  So, for example, you won't get a tax credit for doubling your workforce while cutting the hours of each worker in half.  We're not going to let you game the system to take advantage of the tax credit, unless you're doing right by your workers.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
All of this is going to create jobs in the short term, while helping our economy in the long run.  And I've proposed taking some of the money that went to the big banks on Wall Street to help bolster the financial system and give it to smaller community banks that lend to small businesses like Chesapeake, because too many companies that I'm seeing out there  still can't find affordable credit.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
The House of Representatives has passed a jobs bill that includes some of these proposals.  I expect the Senate to do the same.  I'm open to any good ideas from Democrats or Republicans.  In fact, several members of Congress have proposed tax breaks for businesses similar to what I've proposed, and I'm looking forward to working with them.  The key thing is it's time to put America back to work.   We've had two very tough years.  And while these proposals will create jobs all across America, we've got a long way to go to make up for the millions of jobs that we lost in this recession.  And I don’t have to tell folks in Baltimore that even before this recession hit, the middle class was facing real hardships:  stagnant incomes, rising costs, growing economic security [sic].  So rebuilding this economy and rebuilding -- and rebuilding it stronger than before -- will take time and it's going to take hard work and vigilance.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
In good times and bad, through storms and still waters, men like you have gotten up and women like you have gotten up and gone to work and put in long days and headed home.  You're a little tired, but you're glad for the opportunity to make a living, while helping this country become the most productive, innovative economy in the world.  Small businesses have powered our economy in the past.  They are fostering our recovery today.  I have no doubt if we support you that small businesses like this one will lead us to more prosperous days ahead.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
So we have a track record of working together.  It is possible.  But, as John, you mentioned, on some very big things, we've seen party-line votes that, I'm just going to be honest, were disappointing.  Let's start with our efforts to jumpstart the economy last winter, when we were losing 700,000 jobs a month.  Our financial system teetered on the brink of collapse and the threat of a second Great Depression loomed large.  I didn't understand then, and I still don't understand, why we got opposition in this caucus for almost $300 billion in badly needed tax cuts for the American people, or COBRA coverage to help Americans who've lost jobs in this recession to keep the health insurance that they desperately needed, or opposition to putting Americans to work laying broadband and rebuilding roads and bridges and breaking ground on new construction projects.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
So, today, in line with what I stated at the State of the Union, I've proposed a new jobs tax credit for small business.  And here's how it would work.  Employers would get a tax credit of up to $5,000 for every employee they add in 2010.  They'd get a tax break for increases in wages, as well.  So, if you raise wages for employees making under $100,000, we'd refund part of your payroll tax for every dollar you increase those wages faster than inflation.  It's a simple concept.  It's easy to understand.  It would cut taxes for more than 1 million small businesses.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
So I hope you join me.  Let's get this done.  I want to eliminate the capital gains tax for small business investment, and take some of the bailout money the Wall Street banks have returned and use it to help community banks start lending to small businesses again.  So join me.  I am confident that we can do this together for the American people.  And there's nothing in that proposal that runs contrary to the ideological predispositions of this caucus.  The question is:  What's going to keep us from getting this done?
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
I've proposed a modest fee on the nation's largest banks and financial institutions to fully recover for taxpayers' money that they provided to the financial sector when it was teetering on the brink of collapse.  And it's designed to discourage them from taking reckless risks in the future.  If you listen to the American people, John, they'll tell you they want their money back.  Let's do this together, Republicans and Democrats.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
A number of you have suggested creating pools where self-employed and small businesses could buy insurance.  That was a good idea.  I embraced it.  Some of you supported efforts to provide insurance to children and let kids remain covered on their parents' insurance until they're 25 or 26.  I supported that.  That's part of our package.  I supported a number of other ideas, from incentivizing wellness to creating an affordable catastrophic insurance option for young people that came from Republicans like Mike Enzi and Olympia Snowe in the Senate, and I'm sure from some of you as well.  So when you say I ought to be willing to accept Republican ideas on health care, let's be clear:  I have.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
So I mean, I think we can score political points on the basis of the fact that we underestimated how severe the job losses were going to be.  But those job losses took place before any stimulus, whether it was the ones that you guys have proposed or the ones that we proposed, could have ever taken into effect.  Now, that's just the fact, Mike, and I don't think anybody would dispute that.  You could not find an economist who would dispute that.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
The package that we put together at the beginning of the year, the truth is, should have reflected -- and I believe reflected what most of you would say are common sense things.  This notion that this was a radical package is just not true.  A third of them were tax cuts, and they weren't -- when you say they were "boutique" tax cuts, Mike, 95 percent of working Americans got tax cuts, small businesses got tax cuts, large businesses got help in terms of their depreciation schedules.  I mean, it was a pretty conventional list of tax cuts.  A third of it was stabilizing state budgets.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
Now, we can -- here's what I know going forward, though.  I mean, we're talking -- we were talking about the past.  We can talk about this going forward.  I have looked at every idea out there in terms of accelerating job growth to match the economic growth that's already taken place.  The jobs credit that I'm discussing right now is one that a lot of people think would be the most cost-effective way for encouraging people to pick up their hiring.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
Here's what I'm going to do, Mike.  What I'm going to do is I'm going to take a look at what you guys are proposing.  And the reason I say this, before you say, "Okay," I think is important to know -- what you may consider across-the-board tax cuts could be, for example, greater tax cuts for people who are making a billion dollars.  I may not agree to a tax cut for Warren Buffet.  You may be calling for an across-the-board tax cut for the banking industry right now.  I may not agree to that.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
With respect to earmarks, we didn't have earmarks in the Recovery Act.  We didn't get a lot of credit for it, but there were no earmarks in that.  I was confronted at the beginning of my term with an omnibus package that did have a lot of earmarks from Republicans and Democrats, and a lot of people in this chamber.  And the question was whether I was going to have a big budget fight, at a time when I was still trying to figure out whether or not the financial system was melting down and we had to make a whole bunch of emergency decisions about the economy.  So what I said was let's keep them to a minimum, but I couldn't excise them all.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
I think one of the proposals that has been focused on by the Republicans as a way to reduce costs is allowing insurance companies to sell across state lines.  We actually include that as part of our approach.  But the caveat is, we've got to do so with some minimum standards, because otherwise what happens is that you could have insurance companies circumvent a whole bunch of state regulations about basic benefits or what have you, making sure that a woman is able to get mammograms as part of preventive care, for example.  Part of what could happen is insurance companies could go into states and cherry-pick and just get those who are healthiest and leave behind those who are least healthy, which would raise everybody's premiums who weren't healthy, right?
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
It's not enough if you say, for example, that we've offered a health care plan and I look up -- this is just under the section that you've just provided me, or the book that you just provided me -- summary of GOP health care reform bill:  The GOP plan will lower health care premiums for American families and small businesses, addressing America's number-one priority for health reform.  I mean, that's an idea that we all embrace.  But specifically it's got to work.  I mean, there's got to be a mechanism in these plans that I can go to an independent health care expert and say, is this something that will actually work, or is it boilerplate?
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
You may not support our overall jobs package, but if you look at the tax credit that we're proposing for small businesses right now, it is consistent with a lot of what you guys have said in the past.  And just the fact that it's my administration that's proposing it shouldn't prevent you from supporting it.  That's my point.
Request a Fact Check
January 29, 2010
Now, I just want to point out -- and this brings me to the second problem -- when we made a very modest proposal as part of our package, our health care reform package, to eliminate the subsidies going to insurance companies for Medicare Advantage, we were attacked across the board, by many on your aisle, for slashing Medicare.  You remember?  We're going to start cutting benefits for seniors.  That was the story that was perpetrated out there -- scared the dickens out of a lot of seniors.
Request a Fact Check
February 18, 2010
One year later, thanks largely to the Recovery Act, we can stand here again and say that a second depression is no longer a possibility.    An economy that was shrinking by 6 percent a year ago is now growing by nearly 6 percent.    According to independent, nonpartisan economists, there are about 2 million Americans who are at work today who would otherwise be unemployed. 
Request a Fact Check
February 18, 2010
The reform before Congress that people like Michael and myself have been working on would help prevent such hikes from happening.  And if we walk away from it, we know that premiums and out-of-pocket expenses will keep rising this decade, just as they did in the last decade.  More small businesses are going to be priced out of the insurance market.  More business -- more big businesses are going to be unable to compete internationally.  More of you will see health care taking a bigger and bigger bite out of your paychecks.  Millions will lose their coverage.  Our deficits will keep on growing because health care costs, by far, is the biggest driver of deficits.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Now, there are those who suggest that the only way government can promote strong markets is to allow them to operate wholly outside even the most modest rules of the road, even the most sensible reforms.  Many of these same folks also suggest -- whether in regard to proposed consumer protections in the health insurance industry, or proposed rules to prevent another financial crisis -- that these kinds of policies run counter to our economic interests.  And while I respect those who sincerely hold this view, the facts -- and our history -- do not favor this argument.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
We passed tax relief for small businesses and 95 percent of working families, for college students, for first-time homebuyers.  We extended or increased unemployment benefits not just to help those families but also to make sure that there was some demand in the economy at a time when so much demand had been lost.  We made health insurance 65 percent cheaper for families relying on COBRA.  We acted to close state budget gaps to prevent hundreds of thousands of teachers and public school workers and firefighters and police officers from being laid off all across the country, including right here in Nevada.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
So that's why Harry and I are working to provide tax breaks for small businesses to spur hiring.  That's why we're fighting for health insurance reforms to address the crushing cost of health insurance for small businesses and families.  And that's why we've continued to seek ways to address the home mortgage crisis, which has touched all parts of this country, but has hit Las Vegas particularly hard.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Now, government has a responsibility to help deal with this problem.  I've got to again repeat -- government can't stop every foreclosure.  There's not enough money in the Treasury to stop every foreclosure.  And we shouldn't be using tax dollars to reward the same irresponsible lenders or borrowers who helped precipitate the crisis.  But what government can do -- what government can do is to help responsible homeowners to stay in their homes.  The government can stop preventable foreclosures.  What we can do is stabilize the housing market so home values can begin to rise again.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
So over the course of the past year, we've taken a number of steps to do just that.  We've provided a tax credit for 1.4 million taxpayers to help them buy their first homes.  We've made it possible for more than one million struggling homeowners to reduce monthly payments.  And combined with our broader efforts to spur growth, stem job losses, and stabilize the financial system, we've helped promote recovery in the housing markets.  In fact, in many markets, home values have begun to rebound.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
But we got a ways to go, especially in the hardest hit regions like Las Vegas, where there are just too many blocks littered with brown lawns and "for sale" signs, too many mortgage holders are underwater, and where job losses continue to exact a terrible toll.  So for these communities, recovery depends on continued responsible efforts to stop the downward spiral of defaults, foreclosures, and declining home values.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
That's why earlier today I announced a $1.5 billion investment in housing finance agencies in the states hardest hit by this housing crisis.  And one of those states is Nevada.    So that means that here in Nevada, we're going to be able to help prevent some foreclosures that otherwise would have happened.  It's going to allow lenders to help homeowners who are underwater.  And it will help folks who've taken out a second mortgage modify their loans.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Now, these are very difficult times for our country -- times that demand we put aside the stale debates and the tired arguments, times that demand of us something more.  The fact is, the economic crisis of the past two years -- indeed the growing economic insecurity of the middle class that's been going for a decade -- was born not just of failures in our economic system.  These challenges were also born of failures in our political system.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
And it's got to stop, because the challenges have been mounting all around us.  A health care system that saddles businesses and families with skyrocketing costs.  An economy powered by fuels -- are fuels of the 20th century instead of the 21st, and endanger our planet and our security.  We've got an education system unsuited for a global era, and a financial system that has been rewarding reckless risks.  And we've got a structural deficit that threatens to leave our children a mountain of debt.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
So we've seen the consequences of this failure of responsibility, and the American people have paid a heavy price.  The question we'll have to answer now is if we're going to learn from the past or if, even in the aftermath of disaster, we're going to repeat it.  Because as the alarm bells fade, and the din of Washington rises, the danger is we just forget what happened and we start thinking we should go back to business as usual.  That won't work.  It will not work in this global economy, not in this environment.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
If businesses -- and nobody understands that more than Las Vegas.  If the MGM is doing well, that means its workers are doing well.  And if its workers are doing well, that means that the housing market is doing well.  And if the housing market is doing well, then that means that small businesses all across the region are doing well, who in turn are hiring more workers.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
You don't need me to tell you that.  All of you in some way have felt this recession.  You felt it in the tourism and hospitality industry.  You felt it in the construction industry.  The unemployment rate here is 13 percent, which is the second highest in the nation.  Foreclosures are also among the highest.  Home values have fallen by more than almost anyplace else.  And this is after a decade when, for most middle-class families, incomes actually shrank and wages flat-lined, and the only thing rising faster was medical costs and the cost of education.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
When my administration took office, our immediate mission was clear.  We needed to stop the great recession from turning into a great depression.  And economists of every stripe were warning that was a real possibility.  And that meant that we had to make some decisions swiftly, boldly, and not always popular, but decisions that were necessary.  It wasn't a time for satisfying the politics of the moment, it wasn't time for just playing to the cameras -- it was time for doing what was right.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
And by the way, I was committed to ensuring that if taxpayers were going to provide temporary assistance to keep our financial system afloat, then it actually had to be temporary.  And I was determined to get back every single dime, and we are well on our way to doing that -- getting back every single dime from those banks. 
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
We helped shore up the American auto industry.  That wasn't popular.  I understood why.  Folks felt like these companies should reap the consequences of bad management decisions in the past, just like any other company would.  But if we had let GM and Chrysler go under, it would have been hundreds of thousands of hardworking Americans who paid the price -- not just folks at those companies themselves, but at suppliers and dealers all across the country.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
So it's also why we passed the Recovery Act.  Now, a lot of people think that the stimulus package, the Recovery Act -- if you listen on television, you'd think, well, that's all about giving banks money.  That has nothing to do with the banks.  The other week, I saw a poll that said Americans, they don't like the Recovery Act -- they just like all the individual parts of the Recovery Act. 
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
And the reason is, they think the Recovery Act is for banks and auto companies.  When you ask folks about what was actually in the Recovery Act, they think it's full of good ideas -- like tax cuts, like infrastructure investment, like unemployment relief.  That's what the Recovery Act was.  It was tax cuts for small business owners and 95 percent of you.  You may not have noticed -- 95 percent of you got a tax cut -- because of Harry Reid and because of the Recovery Act.    One million people in the state of Nevada.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Now, I've said before that the way I measure our economy's strength -- the way you measure it -- is by whether jobs and wages and incomes are growing.  But the other way we measure is by whether families have a roof over their heads and whether folks are living out that American Dream of owning a home.  That dream has been jeopardized in this recession for a lot of people, especially right here in Nevada.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Now, part of it was -- I've got to be blunt here, I got to be honest -- part of it was because too many lenders were focused on making a quick buck instead of acting responsibly.    And, if we're honest, too many borrowers acted irresponsibly at certain points, taking on mortgages that they knew they couldn't afford.    And what happened was the regulators in Washington and legislators too often turned a blind eye to the excesses and the failures on Wall Street that fed a housing bubble.  And now that that bubble has burst, it's left devastation that we're still grappling with today.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Now, government has a responsibility to help deal with this problem.  Government can't solve this problem alone.  We got to be honest about that.  Government alone can't solve this problem.  And it shouldn't.  But government can make a difference.  It can't stop every foreclosure, and tax dollars shouldn't be used to reward the very irresponsible lenders and borrowers who helped bring about the housing crisis.  But what we can do is help families who've done everything right stay in their homes whenever possible.    What we can do is stabilize the housing market so that home values can begin rising again.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
And that's why we're buying up vacant homes and converting them into affordable housing -- creating jobs, stemming our housing crisis, growing the local economy.    That's why last year, we put a tax credit worth thousands of dollars into the pocket of 1.4 million Americans to help them buy their first home -- first-time homebuyers credit.    That's why we're offering over one million struggling homeowners lower monthly payments through our loan modification initiative.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
So this fund is going to help out-of-work homeowners avoid preventable foreclosures, and it will help homeowners who owe more than their homes are worth find a way to pay their mortgages that works for both the borrowers and the lenders alike, and will help folks who've taken out a second mortgage modify their loans.            So, yes, we need to strengthen our housing market.  And we need to focus on job creation and getting our economy moving again.  But one last thing I want to be clear about -- we can do all those things, dealing with sort of the emergency crisis, and still fall behind in the 21st century, in this global economy, unless we recommit ourselves to solving some of the long-term problems that have been with us for years.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Because America can't solve our economic problems unless we tackle some of these structural problems.  And America can't lead -- we can't succeed unless we're also getting a handle on our debt.  We've got to confront this fiscal crisis that has been brewing for years.  That's why we're cutting what we don't need to pay for what we do.  That's why I signed a law that says Americans should pay as we go and live within our means.    That's why yesterday I announced a bipartisan fiscal commission that will help us meet our fiscal challenges once and for all.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
I mean, that was the warning.  Plus, because the economy is bad, a lot of people are already feeling kind of anxious, and so they're thinking, gosh, we had to do all that stuff to fix the financial system, we had to do this stuff to fix the autos, we had this big recovery package, the deficits are going up -- partly because tax revenues is not coming in and we're having to spend more on unemployment insurance and things like that -- this is probably not the time to be too ambitious.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Number two, we've got a whole series of cost controls.  So what we're saying is, for example, that every insurer, they've got to spend the vast majority of your premiums on actual care, as opposed to profits and overhead.    We're saying that we've got to get out some of the waste and abuse, including subsidies to insurance companies in the Medicare system that run in the tens of billions of dollars every year.    That's not a good use of your taxpayer dollars.  And we're working to improve wellness and prevention, as I said before, so that people aren't going to the emergency room for care.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Now, the third thing, and the thing that's most controversial, sadly, is what we're also saying is we've got to make sure that everybody can have access to coverage.  And the way we do that is we set up something called an exchange, where essentially individuals and small businesses who aren't getting a good deal because they don't have the same negotiating power as the big companies when it comes to the insurance market, they can pool just like members of Congress and federal employees do in their health care plan -- they can pool so that now they've got the purchasing power of a million people behind them and they can get a better deal.  That can lower their costs.  And we'll give subsidies for working families who can't afford it even with lower premium costs. 
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Now, if you were listening to the Republicans, you'd think that last year we weren't paying any attention to jobs, that we were just kind of -- I don't know what we were doing, Harry.  I guess we were just sort of sitting around.    The truth is, is that everything we did last year was designed around how do we break the back of the recession and move the economic recovery forward in order to promote job growth.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
You can't have job growth if the economy is contracting by 6 percent, because businesses look and they say nobody is spending money, we got no customers, we can't hire.  So the first thing we had to do was to make sure that companies were starting to make a profit again, and the economy was growing.  We are now in that position, because of the work that Harry did and a lot of -- and these two outstanding members of Congress did, Congresswoman Berkley and Titus.    The economy is now growing again.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
So we're going to be putting -- Harry and I are working now on a jobs package for this year that's designed not -- it's no longer designed to grow the economy.  Now it's designed to give incentives to businesses who are now making a profit to start hiring again, and to help small businesses get loans.  Because a lot of small businesses are still having trouble getting loans from banks, even if they see an opportunity for business growth, and we want to make sure that they've got access to capital.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Well, how about that?  Let me -- let me -- before you ask your actual question, let me just make this point.  We're not actually eliminating Medicare Advantage.  What Medicare Advantage is, is basically the previous administration had this idea, instead of traditional Medicare, let's contract out to insurance companies to manage the Medicare program.  And the insurance companies can then kind of package and pool providers of dental care or eye wear or what have you, and it's a one-stop shop for seniors.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Now, in theory that sounds like a pretty good idea, except as you might imagine if the insurance companies are involved that means they've got to make a profit.  And what happened was they didn't bid out competitively this Medicare Advantage program.  So these insurance companies were just getting a sweet deal.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Q    Thank you, .  My name is Dr. Herve Misoko (phonetic).  I am originally from France -- actually from Africa, moved to France, and now I'm here in America because I believe -- I still believe that America is the  country of the American Dream.  And I came here -- I'm a scientist, president of a renewable energy startup, and I came here because I really believe that America can become the first country for clean energy. 
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
Okay.  Well, let me just talk about -- this is -- when the conservatives have their conventions and they yell at me and say how terrible I am -- along with health care this is the other thing that they usually point out, which is that "the President wants to create this cap and trade system and it's going to be a job killer and it's one more step in the government takeover of the American economy."  So this is a good place for me to maybe just spend a little time talking about energy and climate change.
Request a Fact Check
February 19, 2010
All right, now, back to what I was saying.    You know, obviously we know that the country is going through a tough time.  But when I was here a year ago, at Mile High, and some of you were probably here -- some of you were there with me -- I made a promise to you not that I was going to tell you what you wanted to hear, not that I was always going to do what was popular.  But I promised you that I would wake up each and every day thinking about how we can make sure that the American Dream is working for everybody, and more importantly, how we can make sure that it's working for the next generation.
Request a Fact Check
February 22, 2010
And that was just a few days before I signed the Recovery Act into law -- a plan that many of you were instrumental in devising.  That plan cut taxes for small businesses and for 95 percent of working Americans.  It gave direct relief to those hardest hit by the recession, including workers who lost their jobs and families who lost their health care because of it.  It helped most of you close some of those budget gaps that had developed, which kept 300,000 teachers and education workers in your schools and tens of thousands of first responders on your streets.
Request a Fact Check
February 22, 2010
Overall, the economy is in a better place than it was a year ago.  We were contracting by 6 percent and we're now growing by 6 percent.  But I know that your states are still in a very tough situation, and too many Americans still haven't felt the recovery in their own lives.  So we're working to create jobs by all means necessary, be it by cutting taxes for small businesses that create them, to investing more in infrastructure and in energy efficiency, or giving you more help to close budget shortfalls. And I am not going to rest until we see more progress in each and every one of your states.
Request a Fact Check
February 22, 2010
My grandpop used to have an expression -- a couple of you heard me say -- when the guy -- he was from Scranton -- when the guy in Oliphant's is out of work it's an economic slowdown -- that's a little town outside of Scranton.  When your brother-in-law is out of work it's a recession.  When you're out of work it's a depression.  It's a depression for a lot of Americans.  You all are right on the front lines trying to deal with the concerns and problems of those people.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
Over the last year, we’ve worked together on a number of issues –- from economic recovery and tax policy to education and to health care.  And more often than not, we’ve found common ground.  This is important, because we meet at a time, as all of you are aware, a time of great economic anxiety and sharp political divisions.  We’re still emerging from the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.  Eight million Americans have lost their jobs over the last two years.  Home values in too many parts of the country have plummeted.  And too many businesses are still reluctant to invest and expand.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
It’s no wonder, then, that people are frustrated.  They’re frustrated with government and they’re frustrated with business. They’re angry at a financial sector that took exorbitant risks by some in pursuit of short-term profits, and they’re angry at a government that failed to catch the problem on time.  They’re angry at the price they paid to prevent a financial meltdown that they didn’t cause, and they’re angry that recovery in their own lives seems to be lagging the recovery of bank profitability.  They’re angry at the lobbyists who use their influence to put their clients’ special interests ahead of the public interest.  And although both parties are predictably scrambling to align themselves with people’s frustrations, neither the usual answers from the left or the right seem to be inspiring much confidence.  So we’ve got some big challenges ahead.  And I think all of us know that we can’t meet them by returning to the pre-crisis status quo -– an economy that was too dependent on a housing bubble, on consumer debt, on financial speculation, and on growing deficits.  That’s not sustainable for American workers, and it’s not sustainable for American businesses.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
Now, contrary to the claims of some of my critics and some of the editorial pages, I am an ardent believer in the free market.  I believe businesses like yours are the engines of economic growth in this country.  You create jobs.  You develop new products and cutting-edge technologies.  And you create the supply chains that make it possible for small businesses to open their doors.  So I want everyone in this room to succeed.  I want your shareholders to do well, I want your workers to do well, I want you to do well -- because I firmly believe that America’s success in large part depends on your success internationally.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
If we don't pass financial reform, we can expect more crises in the future of the sort that we just saw.  On the other hand, if we design the new rules carelessly, they could choke off the supply of capital to businesses and families.  If we allow our safety net to be weakened, or lose a sense of fairness in our tax code, then we can expect more anger and frustration from citizens across the political spectrum.  And at the same time, if an exploding entitlement state is gobbling up more and more of our tax dollars, there's no way we'll retain our competitive edge.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
Now, our first and most immediate task is to complete the economic recovery by taking additional steps to bolster demand and keep credit flowing.  Along with our efforts to unfreeze credit and stabilize the housing market, the Recovery Act helped to do this, and it's one of the main reasons our economy has gone from shrinking by 6 percent to growing by nearly 6 percent.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
But we need to do more.  We should make it easier for small businesses to get loans, and give them a tax credit for hiring new workers or raising wages.  We should invest in infrastructure projects that lead to new jobs in the construction industry and other hard-hit businesses.  And we should provide a tax incentive for large businesses like yours to invest in new plants and equipment.  That would make a difference now.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
One year ago, we were looking at the possible end of General Motors.  Today, GM has increased production, is paying us back ahead of schedule.  Yesterday, we learned they're hiring 1,200 more workers in their Lordstown, Ohio plant.  One year ago, there was a chance we would lose most of the $700 billion we were given to rescue the financial system.  Today, most of that money has been repaid.  The financial fee we’ve proposed would recover the rest and close the books on government’s involvement.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
And let me say a word about compensation here.  Most Americans -- including myself -- do not begrudge reasonable rewards for a job well done.  What's outraged people are outsized bonuses at firms that so recently required massive public assistance.  Once that money is fully repaid, I don’t believe it’s appropriate for the government to be in the business of setting compensation levels.  I do believe that shareholders should have a say in compensation packages given to top executives, and that those packages should be based on long-term performance instead of short-term profits.  And I think that's particularly important in the financial industry, where reckless risks in pursuit of short-term gain helped create a crisis that engulfed the world economy.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
But here's the larger point that I'm trying to make.  The steps we took last year were about saving the economy from collapse, not about expanding government's reach into the economy.  The jobs bill working through Congress right now are similarly designed to be targeted and temporary.  And I'm pleased that a few hours ago the Senate just passed a series of tax cuts for small businesses that hire more workers.  This is an important step forward in putting more Americans back to work as soon as possible.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
That's why, in the State of the Union, I set a goal of doubling our exports over the next five years, an increase that will support 2 million jobs.  And to help me meet this goal, Gary Locke recently announced that we're launching a National Export Initiative where the federal government will significantly ramp up its advocacy on behalf of U.S. exporters.  We're substantially expanding the trade financing available to exporters, including small and medium-sized companies.  And while always keeping our security needs in mind, we're going to reform our export controls to eliminate unnecessary barriers.  So some of the sectors where we have a huge competitive advantage in high-tech areas, we're going to be able to send more of those products to markets overseas.  And we're going to pursue a more strategic and aggressive effort to open up new markets for our goods.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
Now, I know that trade policy has been one of those longstanding divides between business and labor, between Democrats and Republicans.  To those who would reflexively support every and any trade deal, I would say that our competitors have to play fair and our agreements have to be enforced.  We can't simply cede more jobs or markets to unfair trade practices.  At the same time, to those who would reflexively oppose every trade agreement, they need to know that if America sits on the sidelines while other nations sign trade deals, we will lose the chance to create jobs on our shores.  In other countries, whether China or Germany or Brazil, they've been able to align the interests of business, workers, and government around trade agreements that open up new markets for them and create new jobs for them.  We must do the same.  And I'm committed to making that happen.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
Right now we have a financial system with the same vulnerabilities that it had before this crisis began.  And as I said in the State of the Union, my goal is not to punish Wall Street.  I believe that most individuals in the financial sector are looking to make money in an honest and transparent way.  But if there aren't rules in place to guard against the recklessness of a few, and they're allowed to exploit consumers and take on excessive risk, it starts a race to the bottom that results in all of us losing.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
And that's what we need to change.  We can't repeat the mistakes of the past.  We can't allow another AIG or another Lehman to happen again.  We can't allow financial institutions, including those that take your deposits, to make gambles that threaten the whole economy.  What does that mean?  It means we've got to ensure consolidated supervision of all institutions that could pose a risk to the system.  It means we have to close loopholes that allow financial firms to evade oversight and circumvent rules of the road.  It means that we need more robust consumer and investor protections.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
But let's look at the truth, because the truth is just the opposite.  We have not called for the elimination of private insurance.  We have not -- we've been extraordinarily careful not to in any way undermine the employer-based system.  What we’ve called for is an insurance exchange where individuals and small businesses can pool together in order to get a better deal from their insurance companies.  In return for getting more customers, we would require insurance companies not to discriminate on the basis of preexisting conditions or arbitrarily jack up premiums.
Request a Fact Check
February 24, 2010
During the campaign, I promised a tax cut for 95 percent of working Americans.  I kept that promise.  We've provided over $150 billion in tax cuts to small businesses and to families.  We haven't raised anybody's income taxes by a single dime.  This year, I expect to sign into law another $70 billion worth of business tax cuts for 2010 and 2011 -– a more than 10 percent cut in corporate taxes.  Now, that may not jibe with what you're hearing or what you're reading, but those are the facts.  They're indisputable.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
I hear from small businesses who have just opened up their new rates from their insurance company and it turns out that the rates have gone up 20, 30, in some cases 35 percent.  I hear from families who have hit lifetime limits and because somebody in their family is very ill, at a certain point they start having to dig out of pocket and they are having to mortgage their house and in some cases have gone bankrupt because of health care.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
My mother, who was self-employed, didn't have reliable health care, and she died of ovarian cancer.  And there's probably nothing that modern medicine could have done about that.  It was caught late, and that's a hard cancer to diagnose.  But I do remember the last six months of her life -- insurance companies threatening that they would not reimburse her for her costs, and her having to be on the phone in the hospital room arguing with insurance companies when what she should have been doing is spending time with her family.  I do remember that.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
You know, I was looking through some of the past statements that people have made, and I think this concern is bipartisan.  John McCain has talked about how rising health care costs are devastating to middle-class families.  Chuck, you've been working on this a long time.  You've discussed the unsustainable growth in Medicare and Medicaid in our budget.  Mike Enzi, who's worked on this and partnered with Ted Kennedy on a range of health care issues as a chairman of the committee, you said that small businesses in your home state are finding it nearly impossible to afford health care coverage for their employees.   And you said that the current system is in critical condition.  And Mitch, you've said that the need for reform is not in question, and obviously there are comparable studies on the Democratic side as well.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
I've looked very carefully at John Boehner's plan that he put forward.  I've looked at Tom Coburn and Senator Burr's plan that's been put out there.  Paul Ryan has discussed some of the issues surrounding Medicare.  I've looked at those very carefully.  Mike Enzi, in the past you've put forward legislation around small businesses that are very important.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
The basic concept is that we would set up an exchange, meaning a place where individuals and small businesses could go and get choice and competition for private health care plans, the same way that members of Congress get choice and competition for their health care plans.  For people who couldn't afford it, we would provide them some subsidies.  But because people would have some pooling power, the costs overall would be lower because they'd be in a stronger position to negotiate.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
In each of these cases there are corresponding ideas on the Republican side that we should be able to bridge.  So I promise not to make a long speech.  Let me just close by saying this.  My hope in the several hours that we're going to be here today, that in each section that we're going to discuss -- how do we lower costs for families and small businesses, how do we make sure that the insurance market works for people, how do we make sure that we are dealing with the long-term deficits, how do we make sure that people who don't have coverage can get coverage -- in each of these areas what I'm going to do is I'm going to start off by saying, here are some things we agree on.  And then let's talk about some areas where we disagree, and see if we can bridge those gaps.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
And I'd like to just mention those in a sentence or two.  You mentioned Mike Enzi's work on the small business health care plan.  That's a good start.  It came up in the Senate.  He will explain why it covers more people, costs less, and helps small businesses offer insurance, too, helping Americans buy insurance across state lines.  You've mentioned that yourself.  Most of the governors I've talked to think that would be a good way to increase competition.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
You began your remarks, , by saying there was a glimmer of bipartisanship in the Senate for the passage of the jobs bill.  I want you to know there was a blaze of bipartisanship in the House yesterday -- with, what, 406-19, we passed under leadership of Congresswoman Louise Slaughter, Tom Perriello, Betsy Markey and others the lifting -- repealing the exemption that insurance companies have on health insurance and the antitrust laws for health insurance -- 406-19, a very strong message that, yes, the insurance companies need to be reined in.  So put us down on that side of the ledger.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
Last Monday, a week ago Monday, all over America, results were run from a poll done by the Kaiser Foundation.  It was interesting what that poll said:  58 percent of Americans would be disappointed or angry if we did not do health care reform this year -- 58 percent.  Across America, more than 60 percent of Republicans, Democrats, and independents want us to reform the way health care works.  Is it any wonder?  They want it so that businesses can afford health care.  They want to give consumers more choices and insurance companies more competition.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
REPRESENTATIVE MILLER:  Thank you very much.  This issue of insurance reform is I think where most families intersect with their insurance companies, with the health security of their families.  And let's start out with our commonalities in the bill that REPRESENTATIVE Boehner -- Leader Boehner, offered on the floor.  He agreed that lifetime caps should be abolished, that annual caps should be abolished, that young people should be able to stay on their parents' plan -- I think it was 25, I think, and your suggestion, , it's 26.  So there's that kind of commonality there.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
So, Kathleen, why don't you just address some of the issues related to insurance reform.  There’s some agreement here, but I know that on the Republican side there are a couple of concerns about the issue of rate review.  The issue of setting up some benchmark standards that insurance companies have to abide by -- some people may think that those have been a little bit too aggressive.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
So getting rid of preexisting conditions, getting rid of caps on yearly benefits and longtime benefits, allowing kids to stay on plans are ideas that have been accepted by both -- setting up a new marketplace, giving small business owners and individuals choice and competition in the private sector, but making the private sector operate on a different set of rules, including having some loss-benefit analysis.  How many of those dollars -- you heard Senator Coburn eloquently talk about the 30 cents of every dollar that goes to pay for expenses other than medical costs.  A loss-benefit analysis, a medical ratio, would do just that.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
First of all, the cost, and Jon Kyl laid out the tremendous cost in the nearly trillion dollars of this bill.  And I don't quite know, because CBO said it couldn't assess how much your additions would cost to it, but we do know that there are plenty of taxes on income.  Now, you suggest investment income should be taxed.  We have additional taxes on medical devices and the rest.  What is a consequence of that?  We know there are consequences that small businesses will feel because of the impact on job creation.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
Now, on preexisting conditions we've got a similar situation.  The challenge we have -- I'd love to just pass a law that said, insurance companies, you can't exclude people based on preexisting conditions.  The problem is what they'll say to you is, well, what prevents somebody from not preventing insurance until they get sick and then going in and just buying it and just gaming the system?
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
"Because of preexisting conditions, I have been denied access to coverage under more economical insurance plans.  Therefore I am stuck in an expensive pool and have few options.  The best option would be for the U.S. Congress to pass comprehensive health care reform resulting in affordable health care for all.  The health of my family and the future of small business depends on it.  Sincerely, Raymond Smith, Buffalo Center, Iowa."
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
Now, a lot of the people that I talk to want us to start over in this issue and they want us to give them the ability to hold insurance companies accountable.  One of those ways is through very robust competition.  And when you have a district like mine in Tennessee, where the bulk of our constituents are within 15 miles of the state line, the ability for those individuals -- who have families and live and work and have employees on the other side of the state line who shop for major purchases every day -- is to allow them to be able to make those purchases.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
Also, when you talk about holding insurance companies accountable, if you want to empower patients in front of those insurance companies, take the power away from them, then give them the ability to buy a policy that suits their needs.  They are really tired of paying for coverage they don't want.  If you want to prevent premium acceleration, such as the issue in California right now, where the premiums have gone up 39 percent, if you are siding with protecting those insurance companies and not allowing across-state-line competition, then what you're doing is denying Californians the ability to go to Oregon, where they could buy a policy for 25 percent less, or individuals in New Jersey who could go to Pennsylvania and buy a policy and lower their cost 26 percent, or go to Wisconsin and buy one and lower their cost 74 percent.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
There's another important point here.  The bill that you all are proposing would not put these in place until 2016, and quite frankly I think a lot of the American people agree with us that care delayed and access delayed is care and access denied.  And they would like to see those -- basically what you have -- state lines right now basically have stop signs up when it comes to across state line access.  They would like to see that come down, and like to see those access portals opened up so that they can first lower their cost, secondly so that they have greater ability to hold insurance companies accountable.  And then also state legislators, even some of our governors -- many of the governors -- favor approaching this model and allowing our constituents a way to access this, get the cost down.  And I will be brief so that we can move on to other topics.  Thank you.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
Number one, with respect to California, for example, the problem, as was presented yesterday, in California, was not that there were a whole bunch of insurance companies from other states who were clamoring in to get into California to sell insurance to those individuals who saw their premiums spike by 39 percent.  There weren't.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
I promise you that the problem that's going on in California is going on in every state.  It's not unique to California.  It's not as if there are insurance companies that are given great deals in Iowa.  That gentleman farmer who just talked about -- these are some structural problems that exist in every state.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
REPRESENTATIVE BOUSTANY:  Thank you, Leader Boehner, and thank you, .  I come at this as a physician, a cardiovascular surgeon with over 20 years of practice doing open-heart surgery, dealing with patients who have come to me with very challenging cases at very difficult times in their lives.  And along with my colleagues, Dr. Coburn and Dr. Barrasso, we bring a wealth of experience in dealing with insurance companies and all these everyday problems that so many American families face.  We all agree -- we all agree -- that we need insurance reform.  There's no question about it.  The question is how do we do it.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
Now, we've all been through a long year -- town hall meetings, telephone calls, e-mails -- it goes on and on.  And one thing that has become very clear, the American people have spoken out very loudly and very clearly.  They want us to take a step back, and go step by step with a common-sense plan that really brings the costs down for American families and small business owners.  They want insurance companies to treat them just like they treat big labor unions and large companies.  It's been a resounding message we've heard over and over.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
Health savings accounts -- these are very, very popular among small business owners and families.  And I think the one impediment today is the inability to save enough in these.  And I think there are ways that we could promote these health savings accounts and promote real savings that will actually make a difference.  It won't solve all the problems, but it's an important insurance reform that I think small businesses will really, really jump on if we could expand those savings opportunities.  The current bill, as has been stated, adds some restrictions and some additional tax provisions on these, which make them less palatable.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
The other thing we do is we create a way for small business owners to actually shop and compare apples to apples -- transparency -- and this is critical.  Our plan does this without creating the kinds of restrictions that we see with the exchange process.  And we agree that we have to eliminate annual and lifetime caps, so we have broad agreement there.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
So look -- and the source of how we do this is getting rid of waste, making sure that we don't overpay insurance companies for Medicare Advantage.  I want to remind everybody about Medicare Advantage, because some of us around here -- probably all of us around this table were here when it got put in.  What was the rationale for Medicare Advantage?  The rationale for Medicare Advantage a decade ago was that private insurers could provide insurance -- better insurance -- cheaper than the government can do it.  They can do it better.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
And essentially what my proposal would do, and what the House and Senate proposals would do, would say, instead of having the insurance companies get that money, let’s take that money -- the savings are between $400 billion and $500 billion a year -- and let’s devote some of that money to closing the doughnut hole, which has already been talked about.  Seniors who need more prescription drugs than Medicare currently is willing to pay for hit this gap where suddenly they’ve got to use it out of pocket, and they just stop taking the drugs, or they break them in half, or what have you.  Let’s fill that.  That costs around $30 billion a year, or $300 billion.  And let’s make some other changes that would result in actually the 80 percent of seniors who aren’t in Medicare Advantage getting a better deal.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
Well, I think that's a legitimate point.  I would just point out that 80 percent of seniors are helping to pay in extra premiums for the 20 percent who are in this Medicare Advantage.  And it's not means-tested, so it's not as if the people who are in Medicare Advantage are somehow the poor people who can't afford supplementals.  It's pretty random.  And what we also know is, and I just want to point this out, Tom, $180 billion of it is going to insurance companies.  It's not going to seniors.  It's going to insurance companies, including big insurance company profits -- without any appreciable improvement in health care benefits.  That's not a good way for us to spend money.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
So, , I would just say the thing that I would love for us to get into the details of, in terms of those deficit reductions that are made is the fact that we do it while putting the brakes on Medicare overpayments that went to insurance companies, which were getting reimbursed at greater levels than were doctors and hospitals that relied on a traditional Medicare fee for service, to provide services to our seniors.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
SENATOR GRASSLEY:  First of all, to clarify something, if anybody says that Medicare Advantage is a subsidy going to insurance companies, let me say what the statute says.  The statute says that 75 -- with a big differential where it goes -- 75 percent goes to beneficiaries and benefits and 25 percent to the federal government.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
It's a fact that when you do these things, you hurt the economy because small business is the machine that brings employment in America -- 70 percent of new employment.  We've got to be careful of how you treat small business.  And small business can be -- the health care needs of small business can take -- be taken care of with these association health plans and other things that can be done to make it beneficial.  Thirty-five states have high-risk pools.  Most of them, 150 percent is the maximum cost.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
You can make an argument that whatever savings we get out of Medicare Advantage should not go to filling the doughnut hole, for example.  That's a legitimate argument.  You can make an argument that it should go just to deficit reduction.  Those are all legitimate arguments.  But my point is that the savings that are obtained here are from a program in which insurance companies are making a lot of money but seniors who are in these kinds of programs are not better off, and the 80 percent of the people who are [not] in these programs are paying an extra 90 bucks a year to subsidize the folks who are in them.  And that just doesn’t seem like a good deal for them or for the taxpayer.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
The way we tried to do it was not a government-run health care plan, Paul.  I mean, that was some good poll-tested language that has been used quite a bit, but the fact of the matter is, is that, as Dick just alluded to, the way we've structured it through the exchange would be to allow people to pool, allow everybody to join a big group, and for people who can't afford it, to give them subsidies, including small businesses.  And so the question is whether there is a way for us to arrive at an agreement that would reach those people.
Request a Fact Check
February 25, 2010
We can have an honest disagreement as to whether we should try to give some help to those 27 million people who don't have coverage.  And so that's I think the last aspect of this, and this is probably going to be the most contentious because there is no doubt that providing those tax credits to families and small businesses costs money.  And we do raise revenues in order to pay for that.  And it may be that the other side just feels as if, you know what, it's just not worth us doing that.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
And this notion somehow that for them the system was working and that if they just ate a little better and were better health care consumers they could manage is just not the case.  The vast majority of these 27 million people or 30 million people that we're talking about, they work every day.  Some of them work two jobs.  But if they're working for a small business, they can't get health care.  If they are self-employed, they can't get health care.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
Another woman had asthma, and that was considered a preexisting condition.  She was going to face a 39 percent increase, as well.  Now, if they were pooled with everybody else in that small business and individual market, which is what our bill does, then there are more people buying insurance and there's more -- there's more leverage.  It's spreading the cost, not making people have to pay more of these costs.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
The people who we're talking about are people in small businesses where the small business can't get insurance because, well, they got one employee with a real serious medical problem.  So nobody in that group is going to get coverage, the employer can't afford it.  Or women, it costs more for small businesses if they're in that workforce, especially if they're older.  They don't want to get coverage.  They don't want to give them coverage either.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
He went out in my city in Connecticut and organized 19,000 small businesses, and they changed the law in Connecticut regarding pooling in small businesses, because here was a small business guy who wanted to take care of his people and watched tragically day after day what happened to individuals because he could not provide it for them any longer.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
There was a study just out that in the state of California health care premiums would go down 50 percent if Californians could buy insurance from Nevada or Oregon.  If you create a catastrophic high-risk pool and put the cap on it that Leader Boehner did on his alternative on the House floor, and allow small businesses to create the kind of pools that we've talked about, you're going to be able to give those Americans who can't get insurance because of a preexisting condition and want it the ability to get into those things.  And their premiums will not go up catastrophically.  They will not go up astronomically.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
, I've been very pleased that you've constantly been coming back to the system for members of Congress.  Folks, all of us can fire our insurance company, every one of us.  And as far as I'm concerned, we've got to stay in this battle until everybody in the United States has that right to hold the insurance companies accountable and to fire them.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
I'm just going to make this remark, and then I'm going to call on Patty Murray -- I'm going to save the two lions of the House here for the end -- because there's been a lot of comments from every Republican about the polls and what they're hearing from their constituents.  And, as I said, I hear from constituents in every one of your districts and every one of your states.  And what's interesting is actually when you poll people about the individual elements in each of these bills, they're all for them.  So you ask them, do you want to prohibit preexisting conditions?  Yes, I'm for that.  Do you want to make sure that everybody can get basic coverage that's affordable?  Yes, I'm for that.  Do you want to make sure that insurance companies can't take advantage of you and that you've got the ability, as Ron said, to fire an insurance company that's not doing a good job and hire one that is, but also, that you've got some basic consumer protections?  Yes, we like that.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
I think about him every time we talk about this bill.  And what happened to her is happening to so many Americans who when they get sick today don't have any choices.  They have nowhere to go.  Either they don't have insurance or they've been denied insurance because they don't -- because they have a preexisting condition or they're a small business whose premiums have gone up so dramatically that they can no longer afford to provide it for their employees.  Too many Americans today are in a box and they don't have a choice.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
I'm always surprised when I can find somebody that's defending the insurance companies after the things that they do to the ordinary people in this country.  They could cancel your insurance policy while you're on the gurney headed into the operating room.  Somebody would -- if somebody would explain that to me, I would be deeply grateful.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
SPEAKER PELOSI:  Thank you very much, .  As one who has abided by the three and a half minute, I'm going to take a few seconds more now in closing to extend thanks to you, , for bringing us together, for your great leadership, and without it, we would not be so very close to affordability, accountability for the insurance companies, and accessibility for so many more Americans to improve their health care, to lower their cost.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
Well, I bring that up because we come such a long way.  We're talking about how close we are on this, how far apart we are here.  But as a representative of the House of Representatives, I want you to know that we were there that day in support of a public option, which would save $120 billion, keep the insurance companies honest, and increase competition.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
We've come a long way to agreeing to a Republican idea -- the exchanges.  Senator Enzi has been a leader in that.  Senator Snowe, along with Senator Durbin, had legislation to that effect -- bipartisan.  It caused the insurance companies opposed the public option.  They couldn't take the competition.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
We have in our bill market-oriented, encouraging to the private sector, initiatives.  I think the insurance industry, left to its own devices, has behaved shamefully.  And we must act on behalf of the American people.  We have lived on their playing field all this time.  It's time for the insurance companies to exist on the playing field of the American people.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
The second thing I think we agree on is the idea that allowing small businesses and individuals who are right now trapped in the individual market and as a consequence have to buy very expensive insurance and effectively oftentimes just go without insurance could be solved if we allowed them to do what members of Congress do, which is be part of a large group.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
In the credit card market, part of what happened was we ended up allowing people to get credit cards from every other -- whatever state, and there were a few states that decided, you know what, we're going to have the least restrictions on credit card companies that we could have.  And what ended up happening was that every single credit card company suddenly lo and behold started locating in that state which had the absolute worst regulations in consumer protections, and all these fees and practices that people don't like, folks weren't happy about.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
Now, it is absolutely true -- and I think this is important to get on the table, because we dance around this sometime -- in order to help the 30 million, that's going to cost some money.  And the primary way we do it is to say that, for example, people who currently get all their income in capital gains and dividends, they don't pay a Medicare tax, even though the guy who cleans the building for them does on his salary or his wages.
Request a Fact Check
February 26, 2010
And so what we say is, if you make more than $250,000 a year if you're a family and your income is from those sources, then you should do -- you should have to do the same thing that everybody else has to do.  Somebody mentioned the fact that we say to small businesses -- I think Jon Kyl, you said, we're taxing small businesses.  Look, we exempt 95 percent of small businesses from any obligations whatsoever because we understand that small businesses generally have a tough time enough -- they don't need any more government burden.
Request a Fact Check
March 22, 2010
Good evening, everybody.  Tonight, after nearly 100 years of talk and frustration, after decades of trying, and a year of sustained effort and debate, the United States Congress finally declared that America’s workers and America's families and America's small businesses deserve the security of knowing that here, in this country, neither illness nor accident should endanger the dreams they’ve worked a lifetime to achieve.
Request a Fact Check
March 22, 2010
Most importantly, today’s vote answers the prayers of every American who has hoped deeply for something to be done about a health care system that works for insurance companies, but not for ordinary people.  For most Americans, this debate has never been about abstractions, the fight between right and left, Republican and Democrat -- it’s always been about something far more personal.  It’s about every American who knows the shock of opening an envelope to see that their premiums just shot up again when times are already tough enough.  It’s about every parent who knows the desperation of trying to cover a child with a chronic illness only to be told “no” again and again and again.  It’s about every small business owner forced to choose between insuring employees and staying open for business.  They are why we committed ourselves to this cause.
Request a Fact Check
March 22, 2010
If you don’t have insurance, this reform gives you a chance to be a part of a big purchasing pool that will give you choice and competition and cheaper prices for insurance.  And it includes the largest health care tax cut for working families and small businesses in history -- so that if you lose your job and you change jobs, start that new business, you’ll finally be able to purchase quality, affordable care and the security and peace of mind that comes with it.
Request a Fact Check
March 22, 2010
In the end, what this day represents is another stone firmly laid in the foundation of the American Dream.  Tonight, we answered the call of history as so many generations of Americans have before us.  When faced with crisis, we did not shrink from our challenge -- we overcame it.  We did not avoid our responsibility -- we embraced it.  We did not fear our future -- we shaped it.
Request a Fact Check
March 23, 2010
I heard from Ryan Smith, who’s here today, and runs a small business with five employees.  He is trying to do the right thing, paying for half of the cost of coverage for his workers.  But as his premiums keep on going up and up and up, he’s worried he’s going to have to stop offering health care for his people.  But because of this bill he is now going to be getting tax credits that allow him to do what he knows is the right thing to do -- and that's going to be true for millions of employers all across America. 
Request a Fact Check
March 23, 2010
This year, we’ll start offering tax credits to about 4 million small businesses to help them cover the cost of coverage.  And that means that folks like Ryan will immediately get a tax break so that he can better afford the coverage he’s already providing for his employees.  And who knows, because of that tax break, he may decide to hire a couple more folks in his small business -- because of this legislation. 
Request a Fact Check
March 23, 2010
This year, insurance companies will no longer be able to drop people’s coverage when they get sick, or place lifetime limits or restrictive annual limits on the amount of care they can receive.  This year, all new insurance plans will be required to offer free preventive care.  And this year, young adults will be able to stay on their parents’ policies until they’re 26 years old.  That all happens this year. 
Request a Fact Check
March 23, 2010
So these are the reforms that take effect right away.  These reforms won’t give the government more control over your health care.  They certainly won’t give the insurance companies more control over your health care.    These reforms give you more control over your health care.  And that’s only the beginning. 
Request a Fact Check
March 23, 2010
Once this reform is implemented, health insurance exchanges will be created, a competitive marketplace where uninsured people and small businesses will finally be able to purchase affordable, quality insurance.  They will be able to be part of a big pool and get the same good deal that members of Congress get.  That’s what’s going to happen under this reform.    And when this exchange is up and running, millions of people will get tax breaks to help them afford coverage, which represents the largest middle-class tax cut for health care in history.   That's what this reform is about. 
Request a Fact Check
March 25, 2010
But here’s what the bill does.  It finally tells the insurance companies that in exchange for all the new customers they’re about to get, they’ve got to start playing by a new set of rules that treats everybody honestly and treats everybody fairly.    The days of the insurance industry running roughshod over the American people are over.
Request a Fact Check
March 25, 2010
And meanwhile, there are a set of reforms that begin to take into effect this year, so I want to talk about this.  This year, millions of small business owners will be eligible for tax credits that will help them cover the cost of insurance for their employees.    This year, millions of small businesses will benefit.
Request a Fact Check
March 25, 2010
So let me talk to you about what this means for a business like your own Prairie Lights Bookstore downtown.    This is a small business that’s been offering coverage to their full-time employees for the last 20 years.  Last year their premiums went up 35 percent, which made it a lot harder for them to offer the same coverage.  On Tuesday, I was joined at the bill signing by Ryan Smith, who runs a small business with five employees.  His premiums are going up too.  He’s worried about having to stop offering health insurance to his workers.
Request a Fact Check
March 25, 2010
So starting now, small business owners like Ryan and the folks at Prairie Light, they’re going to have the security of knowing that they’ll qualify for a tax credit that covers up to 35 percent of their employees’ health insurance.    Starting today, starting today, small business owners -- so starting today, small business owners can sit down at the end of the week, look at their expenses, and they can begin calculating how much money they’re going to save.  And maybe they can even use those savings to not only provide insurance but also create jobs.  This health care tax credit is pro-jobs, it is pro-business, and it starts this year, and it’s starting because of you. 
Request a Fact Check
March 25, 2010
And once this reform is implemented, then health insurance exchanges are going to be created.  This is the core -- the core aspect of this bill that is going to be so important to Americans who are looking for coverage.  Basically, we set up a competitive marketplace where people without insurance, small businesses, people who were having to pay through the teeth because they’re just buying insurance on their own, maybe you’re self-employed -- you’re finally going to be able to purchase quality, affordable, health insurance because you’re going to be part of a big pool -- by the way, with members of Congress.  So you will be able to get the same good deal that they’re getting, because if you’re paying their salary, you should have health insurance that’s at least as good as theirs. 
Request a Fact Check
March 25, 2010
If these congressmen in Washington want to come here in Iowa and tell small business owners that they plan to take away their tax credits and essentially raise their taxes, be my guest.  If they want to look Lauren Gallagher in the eye and tell her they plan to take away her father’s health insurance, that’s their right.  If they want to make Darlyne Neff pay more money for her check-ups, her mammograms, they can run on that platform.  If this young man out here thinks this is a bad bill, he can run to repeal it.  If they want to have that fight, we can have it.  Because I don’t believe that the American people are going to put the insurance industry back in the driver’s seat.  We’ve already been there.  We're not going back.  This country is moving forward. 
Request a Fact Check
March 30, 2010
We’ll make a significant new investment in community health centers all across America that can provide high-quality primary care to people who need it most.    And we’ll strengthen efforts to combat waste and fraud and abuse, to make sure your dollars aren’t lining the pockets of insurance companies when they should be making your health care better. 
Request a Fact Check
March 30, 2010
Now, the debate on health care reform is one that’s gone on for generations, and I’m glad -- I’m gratified that we were able to get it done last week.  But what’s gotten overlooked amid all the hoopla, all the drama of last week, is what happened in education -- when a great battle pitting the interests of the banks and financial institutions against the interests of students finally came to an end. 
Request a Fact Check
March 30, 2010
So I’ll close by saying this.  For a long time, our student loan system has worked for banks and financial institutions. Today, we’re finally making our student loan system work for students and our families.  But we’re also doing something more. From the moment I was sworn into office, I’ve spoken about the urgent need for us to lay a new foundation for our economy and for our future.  And two pillars of that foundation are health care and education, and each has long suffered from problems that we chose to kick down the road.
Request a Fact Check
March 30, 2010
We agreed to continue working aggressively to sustain the global economic recovery and create jobs for our people.  And this includes, as we agreed with our G20 partners at Pittsburgh, to replacing the old cycle of bubble and bust with growth that is balanced and sustained.  And this requires effective coordination by all nations.  To that end, I updated the President on our efforts to pass financial reform, and I look forward to the Senate taking action on this landmark legislation so we never repeat the mistakes that led to this crisis.
Request a Fact Check
March 30, 2010
We must provide sufficient oversight so that reckless speculation or reckless risk-taking by a few big players in the financial markets will never again threaten the global economy or burden taxpayers.  We must assure that consumers of financial products have the information and safeguards that they need, so their life savings are not placed in needless jeopardy.  And that’s why I press for the passage of these reforms through Congress when they return, and I will continue to work with President Sarkozy and other world leaders to coordinate our efforts, because we want to make sure that whatever steps we’re taking, they are occurring on both sides of the Atlantic.
Request a Fact Check
March 30, 2010
Now, on financial regulation, again, it’s great news for the world to hear that the United States is availing itself of rules, adopting rules so that we not go back to what we have already experienced.  And during the French presidency of the G20, Tim Geithner, Christine Lagarde are going to be working hand-in-glove in order to go even further in regulating world capitalism, and in particular, raising the issue of a new world international monetary order.
Request a Fact Check
March 31, 2010
So let’s be clear:  Workplace flexibility isn’t just a women’s issue.  It’s an issue that affects the well-being of our families and the success of our businesses.  It affects the strength of our economy -- whether we’ll create the workplaces and jobs of the future we need to compete in today’s global economy.
Request a Fact Check
March 31, 2010
This is not a decision that I’ve made lightly.  It’s one that Ken and I -- as well as Carol Browner, my energy advisor, and others in my administration -- looked at closely for more than a year.  But the bottom line is this:  Given our energy needs, in order to sustain economic growth and produce jobs, and keep our businesses competitive, we are going to need to harness traditional sources of fuel even as we ramp up production of new sources of renewable, homegrown energy.
Request a Fact Check
March 31, 2010
So the answer is not drilling everywhere all the time.  But the answer is not, also, for us to ignore the fact that we are going to need vital energy sources to maintain our economic growth and our security.  Ultimately, we need to move beyond the tired debates of the left and the right, between business leaders and environmentalists, between those who would claim drilling is a cure all and those who would claim it has no place.  Because this issue is just too important to allow our progress to languish while we fight the same old battles over and over again.
Request a Fact Check
March 31, 2010
And while our politics has remained entrenched along these worn divides, the ground has shifted beneath our feet.  Around the world, countries are seeking an edge in the global marketplace by investing in new ways of producing and saving energy.  From China to Germany, these nations recognize that the nation that leads the clean energy economy will be the country that leads the global economy.  And meanwhile, here at home, as politicians in Washington debate endlessly about whether to act, our own military has determined that we can no longer afford not to.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
Now, since I last spoke here two years ago, our country has been through a terrible trial.  More than 8 million people have lost their jobs.  Countless small businesses have had to shut their doors.  Trillions of dollars in savings have been lost -- forcing seniors to put off retirement, young people to postpone college, entrepreneurs to give up on the dream of starting a company.  And as a nation we were forced to take unprecedented steps to rescue the financial system and the broader economy.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
But you’re here and I’m here because we’ve got more work to do.  Until this progress is felt not just on Wall Street but on Main Street we cannot be satisfied.  Until the millions of our neighbors who are looking for work can find a job, and wages are growing at a meaningful pace, we may be able to claim a technical recovery -- but we will not have truly recovered.  And even as we seek to revive this economy, it’s also incumbent on us to rebuild it stronger than before.  We don’t want an economy that has the same weaknesses that led to this crisis.  And that means addressing some of the underlying problems that led to this turmoil and devastation in the first place. Now, one of the most significant contributors to this recession was a financial crisis as dire as any we’ve known in generations -- at least since the ’30s.  And that crisis was born of a failure of responsibility -- from Wall Street all the way to Washington -- that brought down many of the world’s largest financial firms and nearly dragged our economy into a second Great Depression.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
I’ve spoken before about the need to build a new foundation for economic growth in the 21st century.  And given the importance of the financial sector, Wall Street reform is an absolutely essential part of that foundation.  Without it, our house will continue to sit on shifting sands, and our families, businesses, and the global economy will be vulnerable to future crises.  That’s why I feel so strongly that we need to enact a set of updated, commonsense rules to ensure accountability on Wall Street and to protect consumers in our financial system. 
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
Now, first, the bill being considered in the Senate would create what we did not have before, and that is a way to protect the financial system and the broader economy and American taxpayers in the event that a large financial firm begins to fail.  If there’s a Lehmans or an AIG, how can we respond in a way that doesn’t force taxpayers to pick up the tab or, alternatively, could bring down the whole system.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
In an ordinary local bank when it approaches insolvency, we’ve got a process, an orderly process through the FDIC, that ensures that depositors are protected, maintains confidence in the banking system, and it works.  Customers and taxpayers are protected and owners and management lose their equity.  But we don’t have that kind of process designed to contain the failure of a Lehman Brothers or any of the largest and most interconnected financial firms in our country.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
But this is why we need a system to shut these firms down with the least amount of collateral damage to innocent people and innocent businesses.  And from the start, I’ve insisted that the financial industry, not taxpayers, shoulder the costs in the event that a large financial company should falter.  The goal is to make certain that taxpayers are never again on the hook because a firm is deemed “too big to fail.”
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
So by enacting these reforms, we’ll help ensure that our financial system -- and our economy -- continues to be the envy of the world.  That’s the first thing, making sure that we can wind down one firm if it gets into trouble without bringing the whole system down or forcing taxpayers to fund a bailout.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
Number two, reform would bring new transparency to many financial markets.  As you know, part of what led to this crisis was firms like AIG and others who were making huge and risky bets, using derivatives and other complicated financial instruments, in ways that defied accountability, or even common sense.  In fact, many practices were so opaque, so confusing, so complex that the people inside the firms didn’t understand them,  much less those who were charged with overseeing them.  They weren’t fully aware of the massive bets that were being placed.  That’s what led Warren Buffett to describe derivatives that were bought and sold with little oversight as “financial weapons of mass destruction.”  That’s what he called them.  And that’s why reform will rein in excess and help ensure that these kinds of transactions take place in the light of day.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
And I was encouraged to see a Republican senator join with Democrats this week in moving forward on this issue.  That's a good sign.    That's a good sign.  For without action, we’ll continue to see what amounts to highly-leveraged, loosely-monitored gambling in our financial system, putting taxpayers and the economy in jeopardy.  And the only people who ought to fear the kind of oversight and transparency that we're proposing are those whose conduct will fail this scrutiny.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
And while a few companies made out like bandits by exploiting their customers, our entire economy was made more vulnerable.  Millions of people have now lost their homes.  Tens of millions more have lost value in their homes.  Just about every sector of our economy has felt the pain, whether you’re paving driveways in Arizona, or selling houses in Ohio, or you're doing home repairs in California, or you’re using your home equity to start a small business in Florida.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
Number four, the last key component of reform.  These Wall Street reforms will give shareholders new power in the financial system.  They will get what we call a say on pay, a voice with respect to the salaries and bonuses awarded to top executives.  And the SEC will have the authority to give shareholders more say in corporate elections, so that investors and pension holders have a stronger role in determining who manages the company in which they’ve placed their savings.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
In the end, our system only works -- our markets are only free -- when there are basic safeguards that prevent abuse, that check excesses, that ensure that it is more profitable to play by the rules than to game the system.  And that is what the reforms we’ve been proposing are designed to achieve -- no more, no less.  And because that is how we will ensure that our economy works for consumers, that it works for investors, and that it works for financial institutions -- in other words, that it works for all of us -- that’s why we’re working so hard to get this stuff passed.
Request a Fact Check
April 22, 2010
This is the central lesson not only of this crisis but of our history.  It’s what I said when I spoke here two years ago.  Because ultimately, there is no dividing line between Main Street and Wall Street.  We will rise or we will fall together as one nation.    And that is why I urge all of you to join me.  I urge all of you to join me, to join those who are seeking to pass these commonsense reforms.  And for those of you in the financial industry, I urge you to join me not only because it is in the interest of your industry, but also because it’s in the interest of your country.
Request a Fact Check
April 25, 2010
All that hard work, all that hardship, all the time spent underground, it was all for the families.  It was all for you.  For a car in the driveway, a roof overhead.  For a chance to give their kids opportunities that they would never know, and enjoy retirement with their spouses.  It was all in the hopes of something better.  And so these miners lived -– as they died -– in pursuit of the American Dream.
Request a Fact Check
April 26, 2010
We’re joined by members of Congress who work every day to help their constituents realize the American Dream, and whose life stories reflect the diversity and equal opportunity that we cherish as Americans:  Nydia Velazquez, who is also, by the way, the chairwoman of our Small Business Committee in the House of Representatives.    Keith Ellison is here.    And Andre Carson is here. 
Request a Fact Check
April 26, 2010
We have successes like Dr. Mohamed Ibrahim, who I met earlier, who built a telecommunications empire that empowered people across Africa.  And we have aspiring entrepreneurs who are looking to grow their businesses and hire new workers.  Together you can address the challenges of accessing capital.   We have trailblazers like Sheikha Hanadi of Qatar, along with Waed al Taweel, who I met earlier -- a 20-year-old student from the West Bank who wants to build recreation centers for Palestinian youth.  So together, they represent the incredible talents of women entrepreneurs and remind us that countries that educate and empower women are countries that are far more likely to prosper.  I believe that. 
Request a Fact Check
April 26, 2010
The United States is launching several new exchange programs.  We will bring business and social entrepreneurs from Muslim-majority countries to the United States and send their American counterparts to learn from your countries.    So women in technology fields will have the opportunity to come to the United States for internships and professional development.  And since innovation is central to entrepreneurship, we’re creating new exchanges for science teachers.
Request a Fact Check
April 26, 2010
And tonight, I can report that the Global Technology and Innovation Fund that I announced in Cairo will potentially mobilize more than $2 billion in investments.  This is private capital, and it will unlock new opportunities for people across our countries in sectors like telecommunications, health care, education, and infrastructure.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
When I took office, the first thing we had to do was mount an aggressive response to the worst economic crisis we'd seen since the Great Depression, because we didn’t want a second Great Depression.  And let’s face it, some of the steps we took were unpopular.  I didn’t like them.  Nobody wanted to have to fix the financial system.  That wasn’t part of what I ran on.  I ran on making sure we regulated the financial system, but I didn’t run on having to make sure it didn’t collapse.  But I also knew that some of the things we did were the right thing to do in order to make sure that the situation didn’t get worse.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
And by the way, one of those steps was called the Recovery Act.  And I want everybody to understand here’s what it did.  First of all, one-third of it was tax cuts.  We cut taxes for small businesses -- (applause.)  So one-third -- when you hear of the Recovery Act, I want you to understand a third of that went to tax cuts for small businesses, for first-time homebuyers -- some of you have been first-time homebuyers and gotten that $8,000 credit -- for students and parents who were paying for college.  And we cut taxes for 95 percent of working Americans -– 1.1 million working families here in Iowa -– because that’s what I told you I’d do during the campaign.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
So here is what’s going to happen this year.  Seniors are going to help -- get help paying for their prescription drugs -- this year.    Millions of small business owners, including farmers, will be eligible for tax credits to help insure their employees -- this year.    Parents of children with preexisting conditions will finally be able to purchase the coverage that they need -- this year.    Insurance companies won’t be able to drop you when you get sick  -- this year.    By the way, if you’re a young person here, you’ll be able to stay on your parents’ policy till you’re 26 -- starting this year. 
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
And in a couple years, after we’ve set the whole thing up, millions of families and small business owners, they’re going to have more choice, more competition, and they’re going to finally be able to purchase quality, affordable care and get a better deal because they’re going to be part of a big pool.  The reason that it’s cheap for federal employees, for example, to get good health insurance is because there are millions of federal employees, so they’ve got a lot of bargaining power.  It forces insurance companies to lower their rates and give them a better deal.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
Now, I don’t know where they were over the last 10 years, why they weren’t protesting and all that.    That’s fine.  I’m the President -- the buck stops with me.  And we did have to add -- we did have to add short term to the deficit to deal with the economic crisis.  All that unemployment benefits, those COBRA extensions, et cetera, that cost money.  But we’ve also taken real concrete steps to address the long-term deficits that loom over our future.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
Now, we haven’t been perfect.  That’s for sure.  Michelle could have warned you, I’m not perfect.    But I want -- what I want you to know is that every single thing we are trying to accomplish, every policy we put in place, every day that I go to work, it’s about restoring a sense of security for the middle class and renewing the American Dream for folks like you -- because you’re the ones who inspired me to run.  Whether you support me or not, it’s towns like this and families like yours that I spend my time thinking about. 
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
Q    I’m in -- I run a small business and we sell equipment, manufacturing equipment, and then we do leasing on that equipment.  And I’m real concerned over we seem like we continue to lose manufacturing jobs overseas.  And it’s a drain on that. And then we also have in our -- we try to arrange for financing. Our shops that are -- our small machine shops that are just everyday working guys that are really trying to make a living are now in a situation that their credit is challenged.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
On the financing side, one of the biggest problems we still have in our economy -- we made sure that the financial system didn’t collapse, but a lot of banks have still pulled back, and they’ve pulled back especially from small businesses.  So everywhere I go, I talk to small business owners who say, you know, we’re actually starting to get orders now but I can’t get a credit line from my bank.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
But one of our proposals is to have some of that money used to help get small business loans out.  And so this is going to be something that we’re debating.  If we can start loosening up credit for small businesses, and helping smaller and community banks with their lending portfolios, that will make a huge difference in terms of the pace of our economic growth.  So this is really a top priority for our administration.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
And meanwhile, while we talked, other nations acted.  From Spain to China, other nations recognized that the country that leads the clean-energy economy will be the country that leads the 21st century global economy.  They were making serious investments to win that race and the jobs that come with it.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
As a nation, we continue to experience the consequence of three distinct but closely related challenges.  One is a financial crisis, born of reckless speculation that threatened to choke off lending to families and to businesses.  And this crisis, in turn, led to the deepest recession we’ve known in generations –- costing millions of Americans their jobs and their homes, closing thousands of businesses and devastating Main Streets across the country.  And over the past two years, this downturn has aggravated an already severe fiscal crisis, brought on by decades of bad habits in Washington.
Request a Fact Check
April 27, 2010
Now, over the past year, we’ve had to take emergency measures to prevent the recession from becoming another depression.  And at a time when millions of people are out of work, we’ll continue to do what it takes to spur job creation while investing in a new foundation for lasting economic growth. But the emergency measures have added about $1 trillion to the deficit over the next 10 years.  As a result, even as we take these necessary steps in the short term, we have an obligation to future generations to address our long-term, structural deficits, which threaten to hobble our economy and leave our children and grandchildren with a mountain of debt.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
It’s towns like this where working men and women built the American Dream with their bare hands.  This is where our roots are.  I just met a young man coming in -- he says he’s my cousin. There he is, right there.    Seriously, it’s -- what is it, fourth generation?  Four generations back?  I told him he was a little better looking than me. 
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
But all of us trace back to this experience of parents, grandparents, great-grandparents building this American Dream -- not having much to begin with.  And that dream is shared by every Illinoisan and every American -- the chance to make a good living, to raise a healthy and secure family, and most of all, to give our kids opportunities that we didn’t have ourselves.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
So we took these steps to get America back on its feet.  We aimed tax relief right at the middle class, the cornerstone of the American Dream.  We made sure that we cut taxes for 95 percent of working families, put money in their pockets because they were experiencing hard times -- fewer hours or somebody in the family being laid off, making sure that they could still buy groceries and pay the bills to keep the economy afloat.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
We cut taxes for small businesses.  We cut taxes for first-time homebuyers.  We cut taxes for students and parents paying for college.    And all of this -- not only did this help those individual families, but it increased purchasing power and spending power for businesses all across the country.  And then we extended unemployment benefits and we made COBRA cheaper for folks who had lost their jobs.    And then we helped give help to the states.  And Pat Quinn will tell you, because of the federal assistance that was provided, we averted some massive layoffs of teachers and police officers and firefighters all across the country. 
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
And in a few years, millions of families and small business owners are going to have more choice, more competition.  You’re going to be able to purchase the same kind of high-quality, affordable care that members of Congress get.  And you know that’s going to be pretty good.    You know they’re going to give themselves good insurance.  You’re going to be able to buy it, too. 
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
This isn’t some abstraction.  Sometimes, the folks who were fighting us, they made it sound as if, oh, he just wants big government, this -- no.  I just want people to be able to not go bankrupt and lose their house when they get sick.    I just want them not to have -- see their premiums doubled.  I don’t want them to be taken advantage of by insurance companies.   I want you to get a fair deal and a fair shake.    And that’s part of my job as President of the United States of America. 
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
They made bets.  They were making bets on what was going to happen in the housing market, and they would create these derivatives and all these instruments that nobody understood.  But it was basically operating like a big casino.  And it was producing big profits and big bonuses for them, but it was all built on shaky economics and some of these subprime loans that had been given out.  And because we did not have common-sense rules in place, those irresponsible practices came awfully close to bringing down our entire economy and millions of dreams along with it.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
Now, what we’re doing -- I want to be clear, we’re not trying to push financial reform because we begrudge success that's fairly earned.  I mean, I do think at a certain point you’ve made enough money.    But part of the American way is you can just keep on making it if you’re providing a good product or you’re providing a good service.  We don't want people to stop fulfilling the core responsibilities of the financial system to help grow the economy.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
I’ve said this before.  I’ve said this on Wall Street just last week.  I believe in the power of the free market.  And I believe in a strong financial system.  And when it’s working right, financial institutions, they help make possible families buying homes, and businesses growing, and new ideas taking flight.  An entrepreneur may have a great idea, but he may need to borrow some money to make it happen.  It would be hard for a lot of us to buy a house -- our first house, at least, if we weren’t able to take out a mortgage.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
I didn’t say lie, but -- they will tell stories about what’s going on.  So let me just be very clear in terms of what we’re proposing on financial reform.  First -- and I know this is important to you because it’s important to me -- we’re going to make sure the American taxpayer is never again on the hook when a Wall Street firm fails.  Never again.    We don’t want to see another bailout.  That’s what this reform does.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
Now, you’ve got some -- you had some who were saying, cynically, just claiming the opposite, that somehow this was a bill that institutionalized bailouts.  What this bill did was it said, no, if you have a firm on Wall Street that fails, the financial industry is going to pay -- not taxpayers.  So a vote for reform is a vote to end taxpayer-funded bailouts once and for all.    If a crisis like this again happens, financial firms are going to foot the bill.  That’s point number one.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
Point number two -- we’re going to close the loopholes that allowed derivatives and all these other large, risky deals that don’t make a lot of economic sense and that could threaten our entire economy -- we want to bring those deals out into the -- out of the dark alleys of our financial system into the light of day, so that everybody knows exactly what’s happening, what risks are being taken -- investors, shareholders, everybody knows what’s going on.  That’s the second thing.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
And your attorney general, Lisa Madigan, has been fighting on behalf of consumers in this state and she knows how badly we need these protections.    In fact, Lisa and a bunch of other attorney generals came to testify on behalf of the need for these consumer protection bills because they see this stuff in their offices every day.  And it’s true all across the country.
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
Or are we going to protect consumers, and strengthen our financial system, and put rules in place that keep this from happening ever again?    Are we going to give in to the special interests, or are we going to score another victory for the American people?    Are we going to stick with the status quo?  Or are we going to bring about fundamental change that makes things work for ordinary Americans? 
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
We are not powerless in the face of our challenges.  We don’t quit when things get tough.  We’re not afraid.  When something happens, we come together.  We move forward.  We act.  We are Americans -- our destiny is written by us, not for us.    And if we remember that and summon that spirit once again, we’re going to strengthen our economy today and tomorrow, and restore security to the middle class.      That’s what we’re fighting for -- the American Dream right here in Quincy, right here in Illinois, all across the country. 
Request a Fact Check
April 28, 2010
In the two years that I spent running for President and visiting towns like Macon, a lot of folks talked about how the American Dream seemed like it was starting to slip away.  It was getting harder and harder to reach.  Families were having a tougher time getting ahead.  Farmers were having a tough time getting by.  Worse yet, many young people had been convinced that the only way that they could make a go of it was if they moved someplace else.
Request a Fact Check
April 29, 2010
And we do this because you’re the key to our success in the global economy -– preparing our kids to compete at a time when a nation’s most valuable currency is the knowledge and skills of its people.   And we do this because the impact you’ve had on all of our lives:  pushing us, believing in us, insisting -– sometimes, despite all evidence to the contrary -– that we have potential and that we have something worthy to contribute.
Request a Fact Check
May 20, 2010
I’ve said many times that the recession we’re emerging from was primarily caused by a lack of responsibility and accountability from Wall Street to Washington.  It’s part of the reason our economy nearly collapsed.  It’s what led to countless home foreclosures, the failure of community banks and small businesses, and a cascade of job losses that have left millions of Americans out of work.  And that's why I made passage of Wall Street reform one of my top priorities as President -– so that a crisis like this does not happen again.
Request a Fact Check
May 20, 2010
Today, I think it’s fair to say that these efforts have failed.  Today, Democrats and a handful of Republicans in the Senate have voted to break the filibuster and allow a final debate and vote on financial reform -- reform that will protect consumers, protect our economy, and hold Wall Street accountable.  I want to thank Senator Chris Dodd and Majority Leader Reid for their leadership on this legislation, as well as all the senators who put partisan posturing aside in allowing a vote on this important reform.  And I want to thank every American who kept the pressure on Washington to change a system that worked better for banks on Wall Street than it did for families on Main Street.
Request a Fact Check
May 20, 2010
Now, we’ve still got some work to do.  Soon we’re going to have a final vote in the Senate, and then the House and the Senate will have to iron out the differences between the two bills.  And there’s no doubt that during that time, the financial industry and their lobbyists will keep on fighting.  But I will ensure that we arrive at a final product that is both effective and responsible -– one that holds Wall Street to high standards of accountability and secures financial stability, while preserving the strength and crucial functions of a financial industry that is central to our prosperity and our ability to innovate and compete in a global economy.
Request a Fact Check
May 20, 2010
Because of Wall Street reform, we’ll soon have in place the strongest consumer protections in history.  If you’ve ever applied for a credit card, a student loan, or a mortgage, you know the feeling of signing your name to pages of barely understandable fine print.  It’s a big step for most families, but one that’s often filled with unnecessary confusion and apprehension.  As a result, many Americans are simply duped into hidden fees and loans they just can’t afford by companies that know exactly what they’re doing.
Request a Fact Check
May 20, 2010
Those days will soon end.  From now on, every consumer will be empowered with the clear and concise information that you need to make financial decisions that are best for you.  This bill will crack down on predatory practices and unscrupulous mortgage lenders.  It will enforce the new credit card law we passed banning unfair rate hikes, and ensure that folks aren’t unwittingly caught by overdraft fees when they sign up for a checking account.  It will give students who take out college loans information and make sure lenders don’t cheat the system.  And it will ensure that every American receives a free credit score if they are denied a loan or insurance because of that score.
Request a Fact Check
May 20, 2010
Because of financial reform, the American people will never again be asked to foot the bill for Wall Street’s mistakes.  There will be no more taxpayer-funded bailouts -- period.  If a large financial institution should ever fail, we will have the tools to wind it down without endangering the broader economy.  And there will be new rules to prevent financial institutions from becoming “too big to fail” in the first place, so that we don’t have another AIG.
Request a Fact Check
May 20, 2010
Because of reform, the kinds of complex, backroom deals that helped trigger the financial crisis will finally be brought to the light of day.  And from now on, shareholders will have greater say on the pay of CEOs and other executives, so that they can reward success instead of failure, and help change the perverse incentives that encouraged so much reckless risk-taking in the first place.
Request a Fact Check
May 20, 2010
I also said when I took office that we can’t simply rebuild this economy on the same pile of sand -- on maxed-out credit cards or housing bubbles or reckless risk-taking on Wall Street. We’re going to have to build it on a firmer, stronger foundation for economic growth.  That’s why we invested in renewable energies that currently have the potential of creating new jobs all across America.  That’s why we’re reforming our education system so that our workers can compete on the global stage.  That’s why we passed health care reform that will lower costs for families and businesses.  And that’s why we’re about to pass financial regulatory reform -- to protect consumers and ensure that we don’t have another crisis caused by the irresponsibility of a few.
Request a Fact Check
May 21, 2010
We also have with us some legislative leaders who have been champions of not only the auto industry but also the environmental movement, and I want to thank them for being here.  One of the deans of the House of Representatives, Representative John Dingell -- please give him a big round of applause.    Representative Ed Markey is here from Massachusetts.    Representative Chris Van Hollen is here.    And Representative Henry Waxman. 
Request a Fact Check
May 21, 2010
A lot of people thought such an agreement was impossible.  After all, for decades we had made little headway in improving the fuel efficiency of our cars.  We’d hear a lot of urgent talk in Washington when oil prices went up, then we’d see politicians rush to the local gas stations -– I remember going to gas stations -- holding press conferences, announcing new legislation.  But the impetus for action would fade when gas prices started to go back down.  Meanwhile, progress was mired in a lot of old arguments traded across entrenched political divides:  left versus right, management versus labor, business leaders versus environmental advocates.
Request a Fact Check
May 21, 2010
But what we showed here one year ago today is that we could do something different.  We proved that these were false choices.  We brought together all the stakeholders, including former adversaries, to support a policy that would benefit consumers, workers, and the auto industry -– while strengthening the economy and protecting the planet.  One year later, we’re beginning to see the results.  Instead of fighting higher standards, auto manufacturers are engaged in a race to meet them.  And over the next five years, we expect fuel efficiency standards in cars and light trucks to reach an average of 35.5 miles per gallon.
Request a Fact Check
May 21, 2010
But we also know that our economic future depends on our leadership in the industries of the future.  Around the globe, countries are seeking an advantage in the global marketplace by investing in new ways of producing and saving energy.  From China to Germany, these countries recognize that the nation that leads in the clean energy economy will lead the global economy.  And I want America to be that nation.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
On the stage with me, we’ve got some -- the reason we’re here -- people who have helped to live out the American Dream and created jobs.  And we are extraordinarily proud of them.  We’ve got Trapper Clark and Thomas Sturtevant right over here.  We’ve got Charles Reid right down here.  And we’ve got Tamara Marquez-Nugent.  These are the outstanding winners of this award, and you’re going to be hearing more about them.  I also want to introduce somebody who I’m very proud of, who’s doing just a great job as our SBA Administrator, Karen Mills.  Please give her a round of applause. 
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
This is the beginning of National Small Business Week, which every President has recognized since John F. Kennedy started the tradition in 1963.  With us are some of the most successful, most hardworking entrepreneurs from across America.  Each of you has distinguished yourselves as the Small Business Owner of the Year in your state or your region.  Later today, a national winner will be announced.  But all of you should be extremely proud of what you’ve accomplished this year.  I know that I’m extremely proud of what you’ve accomplished.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
Being a successful small business person isn’t just about collecting a profit or outperforming your competition.  It’s about contributing to the success of this country’s economy.  It’s about contributing to your country’s continued growth and prosperity.  And it’s about securing your piece of the American Dream and helping your employees and your suppliers and all the people you work with secure their piece of the American Dream.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
It’s how small businesses begin.  Maybe somebody finally decides to take a chance on his dream.  Maybe a worker decides it’s time to become her own boss.  Either way, these entrepreneurial pioneers embody the spirit of possibility, the tireless work ethic, and the simple hope for something better that lies at the heart of the American ideal.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
Some of you have opened mom-and-pop stores that have led to America’s biggest, most successful companies.  Some have launched technology companies -- software and IT services that have redefined the marketplace.  You collectively create two out of every three jobs here in the United States of America -- two out of every three jobs.  And that’s why small businesses aren’t just the backbone of this economy -- you’re also the driving force behind this recovery.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
The problem is, is that small business owners have also been the hardest hit by this recession.  From the middle of 2007 through the end of 2008, small businesses lost 2.4 million jobs.  And because banks shrunk from lending in the midst of the financial crisis, it’s been difficult for small business owners to take out the loans they need to open up shop or to expand.  For those who do own a small business, it’s hard to finance inventories, make payrolls, or to do that additional work that could make your business grow.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
Now, government can’t create jobs, but it can help create the conditions for small businesses to grow and to thrive and to hire more workers.  Government can’t guarantee a company’s success, but it can knock down the barriers that prevent small business owners from getting loans or investing in the future.  And that’s why so much of our economic agenda has been focused on America’s small businesses.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
Last year, we enacted seven tax cuts for America’s small businesses, as well as Making Work Pay tax credits that go to the vast majority of small business owners.  So far, the Recovery Act has supported over 64,000 loans to small businesses -- more than $27 billion in new lending.  More than 1,200 banks and credit unions that had stopped making SBA loans when the financial crisis hit are lending again today.  And more than $8 billion in federal Recovery Act contracts are now going to small businesses.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
So right now, a series of additional tax incentives and other steps to promote hiring are taking effect.  Because of a bill I signed into law a few months ago, businesses are now eligible for tax cuts when they hire unemployed workers.  Companies are also able to write off more of their investments in new equipment.  And as part of the health reform package, 4 million small business owners recently received a postcard in their mailboxes telling them that they could be eligible for a health care tax credit this year.  It’s worth perhaps tens of thousands of dollars to your companies.  And it will provide welcome relief to small business owners, who -- I know you guys understand -- all too often have to choose between hiring or keeping your health care for yourselves and your workers.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
I also want to say a few words about what the SBA has been doing to help those workers and business owners who’ve been affected by the oil spill in the Gulf Coast.  From the very beginning of this disaster, the SBA has acted quickly to assist fishermen and fishing-dependent small businesses.  They’re offering low-interest loans and deferrals of existing loans.  And while small businesses are encouraged to file claims with BP, these loans and deferrals can provide much needed temporary assistance.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
I just met with Trapper and Tom, who are the state of Maine’s Small Business Owners of the Year.  Karen assures me that the reason they’re on stage is not because they’re from Maine, her home state.    They started a company that manufactures aluminum trailers about four years ago with 20 employees.  They’ve grown rapidly over the last few years, and that growth has been supported by a Recovery Act loan from the Small Business Administration.  They got some of their fees waived.  And today, they have 85 employees, are planning to add another 15 by the end of this year, and hope to add another 30 by the end of 2011.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
Ten years ago, they launched a glove-making business to provide flexibility and protection for our men and women in uniform.  When they won a contract to supply gloves for soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2009, they received a Recovery Act loan through the SBA and saved thousands on fees.  It was that loan that allowed Frank and Donna to rehire some employees who had been laid off during this recession, and today their business is growing and thriving once more.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
So many people who are here today have stories just like this.  Their success isn’t the result of a heavy-handed government.  It’s the result of a government that lent a helping hand -- that complements the sheer grit and determination of America’s small business owners.  And I believe we need to do even more to give these men and women a boost.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
So that’s why I’m calling on Congress to pass small business jobs -- a small business jobs package as soon as possible.  This legislation should ensure that creditworthy small business owners can get the capital they need to expand and create jobs.  It should include needed tax relief, like our proposal to completely eliminate capital gains taxes for those making key long-term investments in small businesses.  It should include expansions of vital Small Business Administration loan programs that are needed now more than ever.  And it should include two important lending initiatives that I recently sent to Congress.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
The first initiative is the $30 billion Small Business Lending Fund I called for in my State of the Union address.  This fund would target only small community and neighborhood banks, and it would help these institutions increase lending to small businesses.  The second initiative is a new state small business credit program that we recently proposed, working with governors like Governor Doyle and Governor Granholm.  It’s an initiative that will help expand private lending for small businesses and manufacturers at a time when budget shortfalls are leading states to cut back on vitally important lending programs.
Request a Fact Check
May 25, 2010
This shouldn’t be a partisan issue.  This is not a Republican issue or a Democratic issue.  This should not be an issue about big government versus small government.  This is an issue that involves putting government on the side of small business owners who create most of the jobs in this country.  It’s about giving them tax credits and loans and tax cuts so they can keep growing and keep hiring.  It’s about unleashing the great power of our economy and the ingenuity of our people.
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
And so we had to act quickly.  And that meant that right away we had to make sure that we put in place mechanisms to put people back to work, to get the economy growing again.  We had to cut taxes for small businesses and for individuals so that they would boost demand in the economy that was caving.  It meant that we had to make sure that unemployment insurance and COBRA was in place so that people would have some safety net under them when they lost a job through no means of their own -- through no fault of their own. 
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
But it also meant that we had to make investments so that we would create a foundation for long-term growth in this country.  See, we couldn’t keep on doing the same things we had been doing.  It wasn’t good enough just to go back to the status quo ante.  We couldn’t have a situation in which growth was premised on everybody maxing out on their credit cards, and taking out home equity loans, and getting deeper and deeper into debt, and wild speculation on the financial markets.
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
And we thought about how could we restore an auto industry that was on the brink.  But again, we couldn’t go back to the status quo.  So what we did was we said, you know what, we’re going to make sure that GM and Chrysler aren’t liquidated, but we’re going to make sure that we invest in advanced battery technologies and hybrid technologies so that we can start seeing a future of plug-in hybrids that get 150 miles a gallon so that we can start breaking our dependence on foreign oil. 
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
And so after the -- over the last several months, after we finished with health care, we’ve tackled financial regulatory reform.  We’ve now passed it through the House.  We’ve now passed it through the Senate.  And we are going to pass it through Congress.  And then I’m going to sign that bill to make sure that we don't have taxpayer bailouts for irresponsible behavior in our financial sector. 
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
And that’s what I want to talk to you about tonight –- because reviving our economy remains the central challenge that we’re facing today.  I don’t have to tell you folks here in California, this state has been hit as hard as any state with economic troubles over the past few years.  Jobs have been lost in heartbreaking numbers up and down the coast.  The housing crisis hit the state with a vengeance.  The budget problems have put a further strain on people here at a time when they really need help, and that forces the state government to make painful choices about where to spend, where to save.
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
Now, you’ve heard that said before, but think about that -- think about that -- this is the worst economic crisis that many of the people in this room have seen in their lifetimes.  And the fact is, is that a lot of folks didn't know what to do.  And there were some economists who said that we may be falling over a precipice:  The banking sector had completely locked up, no credit was flowing, and we might end up seeing a global depression that rivaled what happened in the 1930s.
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
Many in this community are still reeling from the effects of the recession -- and that followed a decade of struggle and growing economic insecurity for a lot of middle-class families.  The truth is, even though the economy is growing and adding jobs again, it’s going to take a while to create the favorable conditions for communities like this one to rebound and to flourish.  But what was clear when I walked through the Oval Office door, at a time of maximum peril in our economy, when economists were warning we might be going into a Great Depression, the financial system might be on the verge of collapse -- what was clear was that even though it might be difficult and even though some of the things we had to do might not be politically popular -– we had to act.  We couldn’t accept a future that was marked by decline.
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
And that’s why we took a series of steps to stop what was nothing short of an economic freefall.  We passed a series of tax cuts to put more money in the pockets of working families right away -- including more than 12 million families in California.  We increased the Pell Grant -- which brought 4 million additional dollars -- $4 million of additional aid to students right here in Fremont.  We backed loans to small businesses -- including $20 million to companies in this community alone.
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
We also provided relief for those hardest hit -- who not only needed help, but would most likely use the relief to generate more economic activity.  So we extended unemployment benefits for more than 3 million California residents and made COBRA cheaper for people who’d lost their jobs so they could keep their health care for their families.  We provided $250 in relief to more than 5 million California seniors -- many whose life savings had taken a big hit in the financial crisis.  And we provided emergency assistance to our governors to prevent teachers and police officers and firefighters from being laid off as a result of state budget shortfalls.  At a time when California is facing a fiscal crisis, we know that this has saved the jobs of tens of thousands of educators and other needed public servants just in this state.  And what was true in California was true all across the country.
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
So we recognized that we’ve got to go back to basics.  We’ve got to go back to making things.  We’ve got to go back to exports.  We’ve got to go back to innovation.  And we recognized that there was only so much government could do.  The true engine of economic growth will always be companies like Solyndra, will always be America’s businesses.  But that doesn’t mean the government can just sit on the sidelines.  Government still has the responsibility to help create the conditions in which students can gain an education so they can work at Solyndra, and entrepreneurs can get financing so they can start a company, and new industries can take hold.
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
But even as we are dealing with this immediate crisis, we’ve got to remember that the risks our current dependence on oil holds for our environment and our coastal communities is not the only cost involved in our dependence on these fossil fuels.  Around the world, from China to Germany, our competitors are waging a historic effort to lead in developing new energy technologies.  There are factories like this being built in China, factories like this being built in Germany.  Nobody is playing for second place.  These countries recognize that the nation that leads the clean energy economy is likely to lead the global economy.  And if we fail to recognize that same imperative, we risk falling behind.  We risk falling behind. 
Request a Fact Check
May 26, 2010
Fifteen years ago, the United States produced 40 percent of the world’s solar panels -- 40 percent.  That was just 15 years ago.  By 2008, our share had fallen to just over 5 percent.  I don’t know about you, but I’m not prepared to cede American leadership in this industry, because I’m not prepared to cede America’s leadership in the global economy.
Request a Fact Check
May 27, 2010
We’re also doing whatever it takes to help the men and women whose livelihoods have been disrupted and even destroyed by this spill -– everyone from fishermen to restaurant and hotel owners. So far the Small Business Administration has approved loans and allowed many small businesses to defer existing loan payments. At our insistence, BP is paying economic injury claims, and we’ll make sure that when all is said and done, the victims of this disaster will get the relief that they are owed. We’re not going to abandon our fellow citizens. We’ll help them recover and we will help them rebuild.
Request a Fact Check
May 27, 2010
So the thing that the American people need to understand is that not a day goes by where the federal government is not constantly thinking about how do we make sure that we minimize the damage on this, we close this thing down, we review what happened to make sure that it does not happen again. And in that sense, there are analogies to what’s been happening in terms of in the financial markets and some of these other areas where big crises happen -- it forces us to do some soul searching. And I think that’s important for all of us to do.
Request a Fact Check
May 28, 2010
As I said yesterday, the Small Business Administration has stepped in to help businesses by approving loans, but also as important, allowing many to defer existing loan payments.  A lot of folks are still loaded up with loans that they had from Katrina and other natural disasters down here, so they may need some additional help.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
To deepen Russia’s integration into the global economy, I reaffirmed our strong commitment to Russia’s ascension to the World Trade Organization.  Today we’ve reached an agreement that will allow the United States to begin exporting our poultry products to Russia once again.  And I want to thank President Medvedev and his team for resolving this issue, which is of such importance to American business, and which sends an important signal about Russia’s seriousness about achieving membership in the WTO.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
And I think that we will be able to track a trajectory.  And if that trajectory indicates that over the course of a year the RMB has appreciated a certain amount that is more in line in economic fundamentals, then I -- hopefully not only will that be good for the U.S. economy, that will also be good for the Chinese economy and the world economy.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
We are obviously still a huge part of the world economy.  We are still going to be open.  We are still going to be importing as well as exporting.  But the economic realities are such that for us to see sustained global economic growth, all countries are going to have to be moving in some new directions.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
That was acknowledged in Pittsburgh.  That means that surplus countries are going to have to think about how are we spurring domestic demand.  That means that emerging countries are going to have to think are we only oriented towards exports, or are we also starting to produce manufacturing goods and services for the internal market.  It means that deficit countries have to start getting serious about their midterm and long-term debt and deficits.  And that includes the United States of America, which is why I've got a fiscal commission that's going to be reporting to me by the end of the year.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
So the point is not every country is going to respond exactly the same way, but all of us are going to have responsibilities to rebalance in ways that allow for long-term, sustained economic growth in which all countries are participating and, hopefully, the citizens of all these countries are benefiting.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
Now, there’s still a lot more that we can do to encourage trade and investment.  And obviously in Russia -- and President Medvedev and I discussed this -- issues of transparency and accountability and rule of law remain absolutely critical.  This is the foundation on which investments and economic growth depends.  And I very much appreciate and applaud President Medvedev’s efforts in this area.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
Of course, ultimately, it’s you -— the private sector, our entrepreneurs -— who create jobs and unleash economic growth.  It’s the market that’s been the most powerful force in history for creating opportunity and prosperity.  It’s not the resources we pump or pull from the ground.  It’s the imagination and the creativity of our people, our workers, and their dreams for themselves and their children that ultimately drives the modern economy.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
At the same time, we are all seated and back in Moscow, we were standing with Presidents.  So it is easier to work.  And this isn’t a significant difference, but speaking in serious term, during this year, we have changed a lot.  The world economy has changed.  And we were working very hard in order to improve the situation in our national economy in order to re-launch failed mechanisms in international economy.  And certain persons present here just worked to save their businesses.  In general, we managed to do so, although we did have problems.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
We will work personally and in the framework of the Presidential Commission established a while ago, but we also pin our hopes on the U.S.-Russia Business Dialogue established two years ago.  We have representatives of this dialogue in this hall, and I’m very pleased that we are interacting on this topic and that eventually our joint projects will help us to overcome the difficulties threatening our economies, the world economy.
Request a Fact Check
June 24, 2010
We still have to do a lot -- to do a lot internationally and to do a lot with respect to our national legislations.  President Obama is doing great work.  We understand how difficult this work is because each solution has both persons who are in favor and who are against.  But it is evident that the world economy and the world itself has changed.  And we will have to change the rules, although everybody present in this hall are committed to modern economic approaches and are committed to a free market.
Request a Fact Check
June 25, 2010
Wall Street reform will also strengthen our economy in a number of other ways. We’ll make our financial system more transparent by bringing the kinds of complex deals that help trigger this crisis, like trades in a $600 trillion derivatives market, into the light of day. We’ll enact the Volcker Rule to make sure that banks protected by the safety net of the FDIC can’t engage in risky trades for their own profit. And we’ll create what’s called a resolution authority to help wind down firms whose collapse would threaten our entire financial system. No longer will be have companies that are “too big to fail”.
Request a Fact Check
June 26, 2010
We had an excellent conversation building off of the conversations that we’ve had at the G8 about the world economy and the importance of our two countries focusing both on the issues of growth, but also on the issues of financial consolidation, that we have long-term deficits that have to be dealt with and we have to address them.
Request a Fact Check
June 27, 2010
The G20 is now the premier forum for international economic cooperation.  We represent East and West, North and South, advanced economies and those still emerging.  Our challenges are as diverse as our nations.  But together we represent some 85 percent of the global economy, and we have forged a coordinated response to the worst global economic crisis in our time.
Request a Fact Check
June 27, 2010
But as we all know, that’s not good enough.  In the United States and around the world, too many people are still out of work.  In too many economies, demand for goods and services is still too weak.  As we’ve been reminded in recent months, a financial crisis in one country can have consequences far beyond its borders.  And history teaches us that growth and prosperity is never guaranteed.  It requires constant effort and it requires continued leadership.
Request a Fact Check
June 27, 2010
The second area we focused on was advancing the goal of financial reform.  Just as we’re on the verge of passing financial reforms in the United States, our European partners have committed to the process we went through in the United States —- a new level of transparency and a stress test for banks to rebuild confidence.
Request a Fact Check
June 27, 2010
And I’m pleased we endorsed my proposal to broaden the G20 agenda to include the fight against corruption.  In too many places, the culture of the bribe is a brake on development and prosperity.  It discourages entrepreneurship, destroys public trust, and undermines the rule of law while stifling economic growth.  With a new commitment to strengthening and enforcing rules against corruption, economic opportunity and prosperity will be more broadly shared.
Request a Fact Check
June 27, 2010
And we have set up this fiscal commission who will provide reports starting in November -- and one of the encouraging things, although there was resistance, ironically, on the part of some of the Republicans who originally had been co-sponsors of legislation to create the fiscal commission and they, in fact, ended up voting against it -- what’s been encouraging, based on what I’m hearing both from Democrats and Republicans, is that there’s been a serious conversation there.  People are looking at a whole spectrum of issues to get at what is basically a structural deficit that preceded this financial crisis.
Request a Fact Check
June 27, 2010
We’re having breakfast this morning because the friendship between Indonesia and the United States has always been strong, and it is our intention to continue to make it even stronger. Working within the G20, we have been able to stabilize the world economy. I was just hearing from the President the progress that's been made in getting back to pre-crisis levels in Indonesia with respect to economic growth and employment, inflation. But obviously, we have many challenges that still have to proceed.
Request a Fact Check
June 29, 2010
But what we also agreed is that we’ve still got a lot of work to do.  There is a great concern about the 8 million jobs that were lost during the course of these last two years, and that we’ve got to continually push the pace of economic growth in order to put people back to work.  That ultimately is the measure for most Americans of how well the economy is doing.
Request a Fact Check
June 29, 2010
Not only will completion of the financial regulatory reform bill provide some certainty to the markets about how we are going to prevent a crisis like this from happening again, but it also ensures that consumers are going to be protected like never before on all the things day to day that involve interactions with the financial system.  From credit card debt to mortgages, consumers are going to have the kinds of protections that they have not had before.
Request a Fact Check
June 29, 2010
So, overall, I think that, listening to Chairman Bernanke, I continue to be convinced that with financial regulatory reform in place, with a recovery well underway, that we have enormous potential to build on the hard work that’s been done by this team and put people back to work and keep this recovery and the economy growing over the next several years.
Request a Fact Check
June 29, 2010
I’m confident that given the package that has been put together, that senators, hopefully on both sides of the aisle, recognize it’s time we put in place rules that prevent taxpayer bailouts and make sure that we don’t have a financial crisis that can tank the economy.  And I think there’s going to be enough interest in moving reform forward that we’re going to get this done.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
I hear worries like this all the time -- from folks that I talk to in town halls like this, but also in the letters that I read each night from all across the country.  And it’s frustrating and often it’s heartbreaking.  And that’s why even though there’s -- there are plenty of challenges on our plate -- everything from Afghanistan to Iran to the oil spill, all critical issues that go to our long-term prosperity and security -- nothing is more important than reversing the damage of the great recession and getting folks back to work.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
And that’s why I’ve been fighting, in addition to everything we’ve done, for additional steps to speed up this recovery and keep the economy growing.  We want an extension of unemployment benefits for workers who lost their job through no fault of their own.    We want to help small business owners get the loans they need to keep their doors open and hire more workers.    We want relief for struggling states so they don’t have to lay off thousands of teachers and firefighters and police officers. 
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
Now, you’d think this would be pretty straightforward stuff, but I’ve got to say that lately we’ve been having to wrangle around what used to be pretty noncontroversial things -- providing loans for small businesses, extending unemployment insurance when 8 million people lost their jobs during the recession.  But lately, there’s a minority of senators from the other party who’ve had a different idea.  As we speak, they are using their power to stop this relief from going to the American people.  And they won’t even let these measures come up for a vote.  They block it through all kinds of procedural maneuvering in the Senate.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
On Wall Street, the financial industry and its lobbyists spent years chipping away at rules and safeguards that could have prevented the meltdown of -- that caused -- that was caused by Lehmann Brothers and AIG.  But we didn’t have those rules in place, that framework of regulation in place.  So instead, we saw a disaster that nearly led to the collapse of the entire economy.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
And there have always been those who said no to these policies and these ideas.  I mean, you look back on the history books.  There were people who said that Social Security was socialism, said that Medicare was a government takeover.  There were automakers who said that installing seat belts was unnecessary, unaffordable, and would ruin the auto industry.  There were skeptics who thought that cleaning our water and our air would bankrupt our economy.  Right here in Wisconsin -- if you look at the lake now and look at the lake, what it was like 30 years ago, 40 years ago.  And there were people who said, well, there’s nothing we can do about all the sludge and drudge and whatever is going on in there.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
He can't be that out of touch with the struggles of American families.  And if he is, then he’s got to come here to Racine and ask people what they think.    Do you think we should fix -- I mean, maybe I'm confused.  Do you think that the financial crisis was an ant and we just needed a little ant swatter to fix this thing?  Or do you think that we need to restructure how we regulate the financial system so you aren’t on the hook again and we don't have this kind of crisis again? 
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
When you ask men and women who have been out of work for months at a time, who talk about how they’ve been barely hanging on, they don't think this financial crisis     was something where you just need a few tweaks.  They know it’s what led to the worst recession since the Great Depression.  And they expect their leaders in Washington to do whatever it takes to make sure a crisis like this doesn’t happen again.  And so there may be those in Washington who want to maintain the status quo, but we want to move America forward.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
So already -- already we’ve provided entrepreneurs and small business owners with tax credits and loan guarantees that’s led to 720,000 clean energy jobs -- will lead to over 700,000 jobs in 2012.  These are good-paying, middle-class, American jobs.  I’ve seen them.  I’ve gone to wind turbine plants where they’re creating wind turbines, and gone to solar plants where they’re making the latest generation of solar panels.  And we’ve created an entire new advanced battery industry here in the United States.  So where we were only getting 2 percent of that market, we’re now going to be getting 40 percent of that market.  That was all done through the Recovery Act. 
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
Okay.  You know, one of the -- obviously part of what triggered this entire crisis was what was going on in the mortgage industry.  American homeownership -- that's always been such an important symbol of the American Dream, right?  Having your own home.  And so I think that part of what’s happened over the years was it was easier and easier to get a mortgage.  And some of that was good, but unfortunately what you started seeing were what were called these sub-prime loans.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
Now, we have been able to settle the markets down and stabilize them so that now it’s possible for people to get mortgages and get auto loans and it’s possible for businesses to get credit -- although small businesses are still having a problem.  But that underlying problem of the housing market is still there.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
Now, here’s the last point I want to make, last point I want to make.  Having said all that, I'm still not satisfied with where we’re at.  We're growing at about 2.5, 3 percent growth.  We need to be growing at 4 percent or 5 percent.  So there are still more things we can do.  I mentioned a couple of them.  We should pass a bill that helps small businesses get more loans.    If we can help the big banks, then we should certainly be able to help small business lending.  And a lot of small businesses are still having trouble getting credit.  We've done some work on that, but we can do more.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
And that's a legitimate question.  And whether you're a Democrat, an independent, or a Republican, all of us should be worried about the fact that we have been running the credit card on -- in the name of future generations.  And somebody is going to have to pay that back.  And by the way, when we borrow all that money, we have to pay interest on that -- to other countries and other investors.  So we've got to get our debt and our deficits under control.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
Well, it’s a great question.  Well, this actually connects to the previous question, because I was talking about what we were doing for the emergency, what we were doing for the local economy.  But obviously now we live in a global economy.  So we've got to compete with other countries like we've never had to compete before.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
And then we’ve got to put more money into research and development, because ultimately the jobs that are being created here are going to be created by small businesses, by start-ups, by entrepreneurs who’ve got a new idea.  And we’ve got to make sure that -- we’ve got make sure that we’re investing in research on things like clean energy, so that’s another aspect of it.
Request a Fact Check
June 30, 2010
A couple other elements -- in terms of our tax structure, one of the things that we’ve done -- one of the things we proposed was eliminating the capital gains tax for small businesses, because small businesses create businesses -- or create jobs.  Start-ups create jobs.  So there are things we can do with the tax structure that encourages more job creation.
Request a Fact Check
July 20, 2010
Today’s historic Kabul Conference is another major step forward.  The Afghan government presented —- and its international partners unanimously endorsed —- concrete plans to implement President Karzai’s commitments to improve security, economic growth, governance, and the delivery of basic services. The Afghan government presented its peace and reconciliation plan —- which the United States firmly supports.  Agreement was reached on a plan in which responsibility for security in Afghan provinces will transition to Afghan security forces.  In addition, Afghanistan and Pakistan reached a historic agreement to increase economic opportunity for people on both sides of the border.
Request a Fact Check
July 20, 2010
But I can assure you this, that my administration is squarely committed not just to dealing with the short-term deficit and debt -- which in some ways is the least troubling aspect of this problem -- what we’re going to have to tackle are some big structural reforms that are going to be tough.  And they're going to be that much tougher because we’re coming out of a recession as we do it.  But I think that as we continue to see economic growth, as we continue to see the economy heal from last year, that the American people are going to want to approach this problem in a serious, realistic way.  We owe it for the next generation.
Request a Fact Check
July 21, 2010
Now, while a number of factors led to such a severe recession, the primary cause was a breakdown in our financial system.  It was a crisis born of a failure of responsibility from certain corners of Wall Street to the halls of power in Washington.  For years, our financial sector was governed by antiquated and poorly enforced rules that allowed some to game the system and take risks that endangered the entire economy.
Request a Fact Check
July 21, 2010
Now, let’s put this in perspective.  The fact is, the financial industry is central to our nation’s ability to grow, to prosper, to compete and to innovate.  There are a lot of banks that understand and fulfill this vital role, and there are a whole lot of bankers who want to do right -- and do right -- by their customers.  This reform will help foster innovation, not hamper it.  It is designed to make sure that everybody follows the same set of rules, so that firms compete on price and quality, not on tricks and not on traps.
Request a Fact Check
July 21, 2010
Now, for all those Americans who are wondering what Wall Street reform means for you, here’s what you can expect.  If you’ve ever applied for a credit card, a student loan, or a mortgage, you know the feeling of signing your name to pages of barely understandable fine print.  What often happens as a result is that many Americans are caught by hidden fees and penalties, or saddled with loans they can’t afford.
Request a Fact Check
July 21, 2010
So, all told, these reforms represent the strongest consumer financial protections in history.    In history.  And these protections will be enforced by a new consumer watchdog with just one job:  looking out for people -– not big banks, not lenders, not investment houses -– looking out for people as they interact with the financial system.
Request a Fact Check
July 21, 2010
Now, beyond the consumer protections I’ve outlined, reform will also rein in the abuse and excess that nearly brought down our financial system.  It will finally bring transparency to the kinds of complex and risky transactions that helped trigger the financial crisis.  Shareholders will also have a greater say on the pay of CEOs and other executives, so they can reward success instead of failure.
Request a Fact Check
July 21, 2010
The fact is every American -– from Main Street to Wall Street –- has a stake in our financial system.  Wall Street banks and firms invest the capital that makes it possible for start-ups to sell new products.  They provide loans to businesses to expand and to hire.  They back mortgages for families purchasing a new home.  That’s why we’ll all stand to gain from these reforms.  We all win when investors around the world have confidence in our markets.  We all win when shareholders have more power and more information.  We all win when consumers are protected against abuse.  And we all win when folks are rewarded based on how well they perform, not how well they evade accountability.
Request a Fact Check
July 21, 2010
In the end, our financial system only works –- our market is only free –- when there are clear rules and basic safeguards that prevent abuse, that check excess, that ensure that it is more profitable to play by the rules than to game the system.  And that’s what these reforms are designed to achieve -- no more, no less.  Because that’s how we will ensure that our economy works for consumers, that it works for investors, that it works for financial institutions -– that it works for all of us.
Request a Fact Check
July 22, 2010
This isn’t just about lines on a spreadsheet or numbers in a budget, because when we fail to spend people’s tax dollars wisely, that’s money that we’re not investing in better schools for our kids, or tax relief for families, or innovation to create new industries and new jobs. When government doesn’t work like it should, it has a real effect on people’s lives -– on small business owners who need loans, on young people who want to go to college, on the men and women who’ve served this country and are trying to get the benefits that they’ve earned. And when we continue to spend as if deficits don’t matter, that means our kids and our grandkids may wind up saddled with debts that they’ll never be able to repay.
Request a Fact Check
July 23, 2010
First, I signed a Wall Street reform bill that will protect consumers and our entire economy from the recklessness and irresponsibility that led to the worst recession since the Great Depression.  It’s a reform that will help us put a stop to the abusive practices of mortgage lenders and credit card companies, and ensure that people get the straight, unvarnished information that they need before they take out a loan or open a credit card. It will bring the shadowy deals that caused the financial crisis into the light of day.  And it will end taxpayer bailouts of Wall Street firms and give shareholders a say on executive compensation.
Request a Fact Check
July 23, 2010
But ultimately, our goal is to make sure the people who are looking for a job can find a job.  And that's why it’s so important for the Senate to pass the additional steps that I’ve asked for to cut taxes and expand lending for America’s small businesses, our most important engine for hiring and for growth. And a small business jobs bill that contains these measures may come up for a final vote in the Senate in the next few days.
Request a Fact Check
July 23, 2010
With this small business bill, we’ll set up a new lending fund to help community banks offer small businessmen and women the loans they need to grow and to hire.  We’ll help states encourage more private sector loans to small businesses in industries like manufacturing or construction that have been especially hard hit by this recession.  We’ll expand our most successful small business initiatives and more than double the size of loans our small business owners can take out.
Request a Fact Check
July 23, 2010
Now, last night, after a series of partisan delays, the Senate took an important step forward by supporting a lending fund in the overall small business jobs bill.  I want to thanks Senators Mary Landrieu and George Lemieux for their leadership and advocacy on behalf of the millions of small business people for whom this will make a meaningful difference.  I was heartened that Senator LeMieux and Senator George Voinovich crossed party lines to help pass this lending provision last night, and I hope we can now finish the job and pass the small business jobs plan without delay and without additional partisan wrangling.
Request a Fact Check
July 26, 2010
So HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan have worked together to improve access to affordable housing and community supports and independent living arrangements for people with disabilities. And we continued a program that successfully helps people with disabilities transition to the community of their choice. And I’m proud of the work that the Department of Justice is doing to enforce Olmstead across the country.
Request a Fact Check
July 26, 2010
Now, you’d think that making these reforms would be a matter of common sense, particularly since they primarily involve just making sure that folks who are financing these ads are disclosed so that the American people can make up their own minds.  Nobody is saying you can’t run the ads -- just make sure that people know who in fact is behind financing these ads.  And you’d think that reducing corporate and even foreign influence over our elections would not be a partisan issue.  But of course, this is Washington in 2010.  And the Republican leadership in the Senate is once again using every tactic and every maneuver they can to prevent the DISCLOSE Act from even coming up for an up or down vote.  Just like they did with unemployment insurance for Americans who’d lost their jobs in this recession.  Just like they’re doing by blocking tax credits and lending assistance for small business owners.  On issue after issue, we are trying to move America forward, and they keep on trying to take us back.
Request a Fact Check
July 27, 2010
I believe that starts with doing everything we can to support small businesses.  These are the stores, the restaurants, the start-ups and other companies that create two out of every three new jobs in this country -- and that grow into the big businesses that transform industries, here in America and around the world.
Request a Fact Check
July 27, 2010
These are the kind of common-sense steps that folks from both parties have supported in the past -- steps to cut taxes and spur private sector growth and investment.  And I hope that in the coming days, we’ll once again find common ground and get this legislation passed.  We shouldn’t let America’s small businesses be held hostage to partisan politics -- and certainly not at this critical time.
Request a Fact Check
July 28, 2010
Well, I just had a terrific meeting with these small business owners here at Tastee Sub Shop.  And I want to thank Dave and Carl for hosting us here today.  And I highly recommend everybody buy a sandwich while you’re here, although as I said before, I can’t eat a 12-inch these days, now that I’m 49 -- well, I will be in a week.
Request a Fact Check
July 28, 2010
This town, Edison, is named after somebody who was not only one of history’s greatest inventors but also a pretty savvy small business owner.  And the small business people who are here with me today exemplify that same entrepreneurial spirit.  And all of these companies have seen their share of challenges.  All of these small business owners have had to improvise and adapt over the years, especially in tough times, and that includes over the last couple years.
Request a Fact Check
July 28, 2010
So Tom and Catherine Horsburgh were telling me that they got through the downturn.  In order to do so, they had to market their products to types of businesses that they hadn’t sold to before.  Brian Bovio’s company had to let some people go when the recession hit.  But in the two years since, he’s transformed his business, and now he’s making people’s homes more energy efficient to save money on their utility bills -- and he’s been able to start hiring again.  He is very interested in making sure that the HOMESTAR proposal that we’ve put into Congress actually passes, because not only will that help to expand his business but it’s also going to help Americans save energy not only in this part of the country but all across the country.
Request a Fact Check
July 28, 2010
Now, all of this hasn’t been easy.  The recession has meant that folks are spending less.  It means that small businesses have had a tougher time getting credit and getting loans.  And that’s why when I took office, we put in place an economic plan specifically to help small businesses.  And we were guided by a simple idea:  Government can’t guarantee success, but it can knock down barriers that keep entrepreneurs from opening or expanding.  For example, the lack of affordable credit -- that’s something the government can do something about.  Government can’t replace the millions of jobs that we lost in the recession, but it can create the conditions for small businesses to hire more people through steps like tax breaks.
Request a Fact Check
July 28, 2010
That’s why we’ve cut taxes for America’s small businesses eight times.  Eight times have we cut taxes for small businesses all across the country.  Because of a bill I signed into law a few months ago, businesses are now eligible for tax cuts when they hire unemployed workers -- something that could benefit every business represented behind me.  Companies are also able to write off more of their investments in new equipment, which Tom and Catherine have taken advantage of.  As part of the health reform package, 4 million small business owners recently received a postcard in their mailbox telling them that this year they could be eligible for a health care tax credit that’s worth perhaps tens of thousands of dollars.
Request a Fact Check
July 28, 2010
Our economic plan has also supported nearly 70,000 new loans to small businesses.  One of these loans made it possible for Tom and Catherine to purchase new equipment.  We’ve waived fees on new SBA loans to save folks money on payments.  And that reduced Theo’s costs when he opened his new restaurant.  His family had a business, a family restaurant.  He opened his own and it saved him more than $20,000 in waived fees -- money that’s now gone into that new restaurant and its 60 new employees.
Request a Fact Check
July 28, 2010
So all told, these and other steps are making a difference.  But when you listen to the struggles that small business owners are still facing, it’s clear that we need to do more.  And that’s why I’m urging the Senate to approve a jobs bill that will do two big things for small businesses:  cut taxes and make more loans available.  That’s what Dave and Carl and Theo and Brian and Tom and Catherine tell me they can use.  And that’s what I’ve heard from small businesses all across America.
Request a Fact Check
July 28, 2010
This bill will also make more credit available.  Everywhere I go, I hear from small business owners who simply cannot get the credit they need to hire and expand.  And we’ve been hearing from smaller community banks that they want to lend to these folks but need more capital to do it.  So the initiatives in this bill will help them meet those challenges.  And it will increase -- allow them to increase loan sizes, and make sure that we continue to waive fees for SBA loans that have helped a number of the people standing behind me.
Request a Fact Check
July 28, 2010
Now, let me just make one last point.  I know it’s no secret that we’ve confronted a lot of partisan politics over the past year and a half.  We’ve seen a fair amount of obstruction that’s had more to do with gaining political advantage than helping the country.  But surely, Democrats and Republicans ought to be able to agree on this bill.  When I had a conversation with Mitch McConnell and John Boehner yesterday, I told them that the provisions of this bill are things that the Republican Party has said it’s supported for years:  helping small businesses, cutting taxes, making credit available.  This is as American as apple pie.  Small businesses are the backbone of our economy.  They are central to our identity as a nation.  They are going to lead this recovery.  The folks standing beside me are going to lead this recovery.
Request a Fact Check
July 29, 2010
The last time I spoke with you was during your Orlando conference in August -- got Orlando in the house.  Orlando conference back in August of 2008.  I didn’t have any gray hair back then.    Say that's all right?    But I want to remind you what things were like in August of 2008.  Our economy was in freefall. We had just seen seven straight months of job loss.  Foreclosures were sweeping the nation.  And we were on the verge of a financial crisis that threatened to plunge our economy into a second Great Depression.
Request a Fact Check
July 29, 2010
We’ve also included a permanent reauthorization of the Indian Health Care Improvement Act in the health care reform legislation we passed this spring.  We’re strengthening Tribal education.  We’re working to spur economic development throughout Indian Country.  And in consultation with Indian tribes, we’re now formally reviewing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.  And after 14 long years, we’ve finally settled the Cobell case and we’re working with Congress to get the settlement approved as quickly as possible.
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
Listen, before I just make a few short remarks, I just want to acknowledge some people who are here who have been critical in helping make sure that we are putting the U.S. auto industry back on track.  First of all, my Secretary of Transportation Ray Lahood, from Peoria, Illinois, is here.    The mayor of Hamtramck, Karen Majewski, is here.  Give her a big round of applause. 
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
You know, it is great to be back here and to see this outstanding plant and to see all of you.  And I want to take you down Memory Lane just a little bit to a year ago.  At that point, we were coming out of the worst recession that we had seen since the Great Depression.  The economy was shrinking.  We had lost 8 million jobs.  The day I was sworn in, we lost -- that month, we lost 750,000 jobs -- that month that I was sworn in.  That's true.
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
The auto industry had lost hundreds of thousands of jobs.  Sales had gone down by 40 percent.  And two of the Big Three, GM and Chrysler, were on the brink of a liquidation bankruptcy, which means they would have been wiped out.  And if GM and Chrysler were wiped out, then suppliers would be wiped out and dealerships would have been wiped out, and communities would have been even more devastated.
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
It’s estimated that we would have lost another million jobs if we had not stepped in.    Now, we basically had three options when I was confronting what was happening in the U.S. auto industry.  Option number one was to keep on doing what the previous administration had been doing, which is basically give about a billion dollars a month to the auto industry, but not really ask for any kind of change that would get it on the right track.
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
And now here we are a year later.  And a year later, GM and Chrysler, along with Ford, are all posting a profit.    The U.S. auto industry has hired 55,000 workers, the most job growth in a decade.    And not only that, but you’re producing the cars of the future right here at this plant, producing cars that are going to reduce our dependence on foreign oil.  This car right here doesn’t need a sip of gasoline for 40 miles and then keeps on going after that. 
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
Now, let’s be clear, we’re not out of the woods yet.  The economy is now growing -- it was shrinking at 6 percent.  Now, it’s growing at 2.4 percent.  We’ve added private sector jobs for six months in a row, but there’s still too many folks unemployed.  There are a lot of folks in the auto industry who haven’t been hired back.  We’re still going to have to do a lot of work to put folks back to work.
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
We are back on our feet.  We are on the move.  GM is on the move.  The U.S. auto industry is on the move.  And America is on the move, and I’m not going to rest until every single American worker who wants to get back to work is going to be back to work.  You're helping lead the way and I’m grateful to you! 
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
We’ve got some special guests here that I want to acknowledge.  First of all, your Secretary of Transportation, who has helped to make sure that we are guiding this process of rebuilding the American auto industry and is doing an outstanding job, from Peoria, Illinois, Secretary Ray Lahood.  Give him a big round of applause. 
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
I wasn’t used to that.  Had all these -- everything was electronic, and I had -- all my -- I’d had to roll up my windows up until that point.  So I’ve got some good memories of that car.  But I’ve got to tell you when I sat in this car, this is a better car.  This is a state-of-the-art car.  This is a world-class car right here. 
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
In the 12 months before I took office, the American auto industry lost hundreds of thousands of jobs.  Sales plunged 40 percent.  Think about that.  The industry looked like it was going over a cliff.  As the financial crisis and the vicious recession collided with an industry that for too long had avoided hard choices and hadn’t fully adapted to changing times, we finally reached the point where two of the Big Three -- Chrysler and GM -- were on the brink of liquidation.
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
And that left us with very few choices.  One choice, one option was to keep the practice of giving billions of dollars of taxpayer money to the auto industry but not really forcing any accountability or change -– so you just keep on kicking the tough problems down the road year after year and hopefully seeing if you can get more and more money out of Washington.
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
Last year, many thought this industry would keep losing jobs, as it had for the better part of the past decade.  Today, U.S. automakers have added 55,000 jobs since last June, the strongest job growth in more than 10 years in the auto industry.  This plant just hired a new shift of 1,100 workers last week. 
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
So there’s no doubt that the auto industry is growing stronger.  But, look, the hard truth is this industry lost a lot of jobs in recent years.  Some of those jobs aren’t coming back partly because automakers have become so much more efficient than they used to be.  This is a lean, mean operation.  And so there are people who have still lost their jobs, haven’t been hired back and it wasn’t their fault.  Mistakes were made in managing the company that weren’t theirs.
Request a Fact Check
July 30, 2010
I want you to remember, though, if some folks had their way, none of this would have been happening.  I just want to point that out.  Right?  I mean this -- this plant -- this plant and your jobs might not exist.  There were leaders of the “just say no” crowd in Washington -- they were saying -- oh, standing by the auto industry would guarantee failure.  One of them called it “the worst investment you could possibly make.”
Request a Fact Check
August 14, 2010
So, with the closure of the well we mark an important milestone.  But this is not the end of the journey.  And in completing the work ahead I'm reminded of what I heard when I was in Louisiana back in June.  I spent time with folks on Grand Isle, meeting with fishermen and small business owners, and the town's mayor, David Camardelle.  And he told me what his friends and neighbors were going through.  He talked about how hard things had been.  But he also explained the way folks rallied to support one another, and said, the people in this community may not have a lot of money, but that didn’t matter.  "We help each other," he said.  "That's what we do."
Request a Fact Check
August 16, 2010
Now, that’s not easy.  We’ve been through a terrible recession -– the worst that we’ve seen since the Great Depression.  And this recession was the culmination of a decade that fell like a sledgehammer on middle-class families.  For the better part of 10 years, people were seeing stagnant incomes and sluggish growth and skyrocketing health care costs and skyrocketing tuition bills, and people were feeling less secure economically.
Request a Fact Check
August 16, 2010
And few parts of the economy were hit harder than manufacturing.  Over the last 10 years, the number of people working in manufacturing shrank by a third.  And that left millions of skilled, hardworking Americans sitting idle, just like the plants were sitting idle.  That was before the recession hit. Obviously once the recession took hold, millions more were struggling in ways that they never imagined.  And there’s nobody here who hasn’t been touched in some way by this recession.  And certainly a state like Wisconsin or my home state of Illinois can tell a lot of stories about how badly hit manufacturing was, particularly in the Midwest.
Request a Fact Check
August 16, 2010
We’ve cut taxes for small businesses that hire unemployed workers.  In fact, I’ve signed seven other small business tax cuts so that entrepreneurs can help expand and buy new equipment and add more employees.  We’ve taken emergency steps to prevent layoffs of hundreds of thousands of teachers and firefighters and police officers, and other critical public servants in our communities.  And I think that Governor Doyle will testify that we have made progress in part because everybody has pulled together.  There was a great danger of even greater layoffs all across this state for vital services that would affect our kids and our families.  These folks would have otherwise lost their jobs because of state and local budget cuts.
Request a Fact Check
August 16, 2010
We expect our commitment to clean energy to lead to more than 800,000 jobs by 2012.  And that’s not just creating work in the short term, that’s going to help lay the foundation for lasting economic growth.  I just want everybody to understand --just a few years ago, American businesses could only make 2 percent of the world’s advanced batteries for hybrid and electric vehicles -- 2 percent.  In just a few years, we’ll have up to 40 percent of the world’s capacity.
Request a Fact Check
August 17, 2010
Our choice in this election is between policies that encourage job creation in America, and policies that encourage job creation someplace else.  So instead of giving tax breaks to companies that ship jobs overseas, we want to cut taxes for small business owners who create jobs right here in the United States of America. 
Request a Fact Check
August 17, 2010
And these ideas shouldn’t be Democratic or Republican ideas. They are common-sense ideas.  And yet, most of the Republicans in Congress voted no on just about every one of these policies.  Do you remember when I was running, we had a little slogan -- “Yes, we can.”  These guys’ slogan is, “No, we can’t.”    No on closing loopholes for companies that ship jobs overseas.  No on the tax cuts for small businesses.  No on the clean energy jobs.  No on the railroad and highway projects.
Request a Fact Check
August 17, 2010
Think about this.  We had the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression, almost resulted in a complete meltdown -- 8 million jobs lost.   And when we try to repair the system to maintain innovation in the financial system, but to make sure that people have some idea what kind of mortgage they’re buying, or what kind of credit card interest is being charged, or making sure that if one bank goes down, taxpayers don’t have to bail it out in order to ensure that the whole system goes down -- they said, no.
Request a Fact Check
August 17, 2010
Same thing with the financial system.  We can’t go back to a status quo that almost brought this country to its knees.  We’ve got to move forward so that, in fact, you now know what credit card companies are charging you for interest, and mortgage companies can't steer you to the more expensive interest rate on your mortgage, and there will not be taxpayer bailouts.
Request a Fact Check
August 17, 2010
That can’t be the kind of leadership that we need going into the 21st century.  We can’t go backwards.  We have to move forward.  That’s what’s at stake in this election.  If we give them the keys to this economy, they are going to drive it right back into the ditch.  And riding shotgun will be the big banks and the insurance companies and the oil companies and every special interest under the sun.
Request a Fact Check
August 17, 2010
And I want to be very clear here.  I want businesses in this country to succeed.  And the vast majority of folks out here who are running a business, they are doing what’s right by their communities and their workers.  And I want to do everything we can to help you grow and to prosper and hire more employees.  We just came back from a company that's building advanced batteries right here in this region, hiring more employees, and we are giving them all the help we can.
Request a Fact Check
August 17, 2010
A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to visit a Chrysler plant in Detroit.  Now, this is a place that’s been hit harder by recession than almost anywhere else in the country.  The auto industry alone lost hundreds of thousands of jobs in the year before I took office -- obviously some of those jobs were lost here in Wisconsin.  We had to make a very difficult decision when I was President about whether to walk away from U.S. automakers or help them get back on their feet.  And we decided we could not walk away from up to a million jobs and an iconic industry that symbolizes the rise of American manufacturing.  And so we told the automakers, we’ll give you some temporary assistance, but you’ve got to restructure your plants so they can finally compete in the 21st century.
Request a Fact Check
August 17, 2010
And we’ve got a track record.  Right now we’ve got a bill pending to provide tax breaks, including the elimination of capital gains for small start-up businesses.  We’ve been debating this thing how long now?  Six months, a year.  And these guys still aren’t going for it.  The Chamber of Commerce is for it.    You know?  Now, they usually don’t side with me on a lot of things -- although they sided with me on the Recovery Act and they’ve conveniently forgot about that.
Request a Fact Check
August 17, 2010
Tiffany Turner and her husband Brady gave up their careers in teaching and insurance to open their own inn on the coast.  And despite the recession, business has been good.  They’re even looking to expand and hire new employees.  For a time, their community bank couldn’t give them the loan they needed to grow, but recently that changed.  In fact, many banks like theirs have begun to open the flow of credit to small businesses for the first time in four years, and that’s good news.
Request a Fact Check