Obama: ‘Help Is on the Way’

Obama Goes on Offensive to Get Economic Plan Passed

Since being sworn in as the 44th president of the United States, Barack Obama has been bombarded by a series of challenges that no other chief executive of this nation has had to face with less than a month in office. He seeks to meet his major test – restoring an economy ravaged by an unmerciful recession, a severe credit crunch and rising unemployment – with the passage of his mammoth American Economic Recovery and Reinvestment Act. Through this economic recovery proposal, the president plans to create as many as four million jobs over the next few years through, among other measures, a mix of “shovel-ready” infrastructure projects and long-term development of the sustainable energy industry. He also plans to jolt the economy by boosting consumer spending through a series of tax breaks and such measures as unemployment insurance relief.

What has stalled the Obama Administration’s ambitious program, however, has been recent political wrangling within the House and Senate over various provisions in the bill. For instance, the $819 billion House version, which did not receive a single Republican vote, focuses on spending for state education aid, health insurance for the unemployed and the repair of highways and bridges. In the $827 billion Senate version, Republican senators slashed spending provisions citing them as “wasteful” while expanding tax breaks, including fixing the alternative minimum tax that impacts upper-income households and making car loan interest deductible. After the Senate votes on the measure – which has so far gained support from only three Republicans, just enough to get the 60 votes needed for passage – the legislation goes to conference committee for reconciliation of the House and Senate versions of the package. Both houses then vote on the measure again.

56692714 President Obama holds a town hall meeting in Fort Myers, Florida, Tuesday. (Source: Getty Images)

After making overtures to Republicans in a bid for bipartisanship, Obama has now gone on the offensive to get this critical measure passed. This week, he is taking his case to the American people through town halls in Elkhart, Indiana, and Fort Myers, Florida; his first presidential press conference; and an address to both houses of Congress.

In an exclusive one–on-one interview with Black Enterprise magazine Editor-In-Chief Derek T, Dingle, the president discussed the importance of swift passage of the recovery package, reviewed his expansive economic agenda, and detailed his administration’s plans to provide jobs, relief and entrepreneurial opportunities to millions of Americans – including our readership.

Black Enterprise: How would you characterize your first few weeks in office?

President Barack Obama: Obviously we have some enormous challenges but I’m very confident about the team that I’ve put in place. I think the economic recovery and reinvestment package that is working its way through Congress is one critical component of an overall recovery package. We’re also going to have to strengthen the banking system so that credit is going to businesses again. We’re also going to have to

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  • John R Johnson

    President Obama is doing a great job despite the fact that he inherit this financial mess from the the Bush adminstration and its cronies that ran mortage companies, investment banks and brokerage houses on Wall Street to the breaking point of collapses. Now, we are in the same boat rich or poor, black or white, Christian or Non Christian. It will take a collective effort of the Federal Government, Private Industry and all Americans working together to fix this situation not just put a band aid on it.

    God Bless President Obama and America!!

  • Dianne D.

    President Obama, I applaud you for sticking to your guns on open and transparent government. Too often we have seen and heard big dollar legislation passed with no real accountability as to where and when the money was spent, and no way to check the effectiveness of the investment of taxpayer dollars. I am thrilled to see that you will be actively looking for feedback from the people the money is intended to help, and I encourage all reading this to stay in touch with their legislators to make sure your community’s and this nation’s priorities are followed.

    There can be no more “sweetheart” deals that only benefit legislators’ biggest contributors and political cronies. All of us who voted are deserving of help and of information about where our tax dollars are going.

    Keep going, President Obama – I believe in you and your policies and you have my complete support and fervent prayers!

  • MRS. RENEE

    I AM GRATEFUL FOR PRESIDENT OBAMA BEING OUR UNIVERSAL PRESIDENT. I KNOW WITHIN MY HEART HE WILL GET THE JOB DONE; AND WE MUST ALL DO OUR PARTS TO ASSIST HE AND THE NEW ADMINSTRATION. WE AS A PEOPLE OR TEAM WILL GET THE JOB DONE. WE ARE A SMALL STRUGGLING BUSINESS; HOWEVER I KNOW WE WILL ADVANCE. PRESIDENT OBAMA, I AM GRATEFUL FOR YOU , YOUR LOVING FAMILY &; ADMINSTRATION WILL SUCCEED. CONTINUE TO PRESS FORWARD, I KNOW YOU HAVE AND WILL CONTINUE TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE. WITH GREAT ADMIRATION MRS. RENEE

  • Derek Jacobs

    The people most adamantly against Obama HAVE jobs: Republican Senator Dick Shelby, oxycontin addict Rush Limbaugh, etc. They are going to be fine no matter what happens to the rest of us. They can afford to make Americans continue to suffer purely for their own political benefit.

  • Abakar Meremi

    The world is changing, and
    we must change with it.
    Therefore, that’s what the POTUS
    Obama is doing. We need a pragmatic,
    non-ideological approach to our problem.
    Prez. Obama will be extraordinary.

  • Andrea Sinclair

    President Obama is so intelligent and brings clarity to every situation.

  • Natacha Pierre

    Congratulations Mr President Obama
    Good luck with the stimulus package and I wish you all the help needed to put back America on track.

  • http://POLITO44 Michael

    President Obama, I saw you walking last night. It appeared you had a litte swagger or strut in your step…where did that come from?:))))

  • Emmanuel S

    Mr. President I do believe we are in the mix of great recovery and you will do well as the commander and chief! The concern with the stimulus package you are pushing so hard is the lack of consideration of the needs of the working, taxpaying americans
    If we can continue to throw money at the financial institutions without getting any accountability, why would it not be feisable to give each taxpaying American $25,000 to help them through these hard times. There is more than enough money in the stimuli to do this and still move forward with the

  • http://ProfoundImagery.com steward B. Clinton

    I love you big Brother. Keep it up, and please direct people to call and meet with their Gongress and senate representatives.

  • RWG

    Fantastic interview! President Obama is an outstanding leader during a perilous juncture in our nation’s history. He has brought and is bringing change to Washington, and I love how he remembers that he’s working for us, the people. With Obama in office, there’s hope that now there will be government of the people, by the people, and for the people–not special interests, not big business, etc. God bless President Obama!

  • http://faithunlmtd12@yahoo.com Imani Olubajo

    I am so proud of President Obama and his tenacity within the first few weeks of office. I really appreciated what he said “People have to continue to innovate, look for new customers, try to find creative ways to turn crisis into opportunity, retool for the future.” This is exactly how I feel! I believe that many of us Americans, especially those of us of color have a special opportunity to be part of the solution. I believe we can do exactly what our president wants us to do and be innovative. We can trailblaze our way into paving a whole new era of success and prosperity that will inevitably play a part in helping the country regain strength, stamina and healing.
    I am motivated as I have started a “Trailblazing” new company and am producimg an amateur play this coming August. Good job Mr. President. And I promise to make you proud by playing my part, participating in, and being part of the solution.

    Imani Olubajo,
    Registered Agent of:
    F.A.I.T.H. Unlmtd (Families Acentuating Inter-related Teamwork Harmoniously)

  • http://www.exalt-one.com Pamela Woods

    Very well put Imani, my sentiments exactly. I too admire the way President Obama came into office and stepped right out the boat like Jesus calling Peter out of the boat to stand on the waters. Thank you for requoting President Obama’s statement “People have to continue to innovate, look for new customers, try to find creative ways to turn crisis into opportunity, retool for the future.” I too am stepping out the boat in an effort of starting a ground-breaking new company directed towards motivating, inspiring and building-up. Mr. President, I am right behind you, onboard as well as on my knees praying for you and your family.
    Is there anything to hard for God?
    Pamela Woods
    Exalt-One
    Be Exalted, inside and out!

  • http://ramonartot@aol.com Pastor Ramona Hunter

    I know without a doubt that President Obama has been ordain by God to be the President for such a time as this. All he has to do is “Stand still and let God direct Him” The saints are praying for him and trusting the Lord to take him through the storms and rain.Stay focused on Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all you need Him to do. Mr President Lean on Him, not your understanding.Just trust Him.. We do love you
    and always lifting you before the Lord. Pastor Hunter, Dayton, Ohio

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  • http://editorblackenterprise.com isaac pennington

    the united states at this time seems to be liken to a ship that has gone off course in some very stormy bad weather, it seems the only soulution
    at this time is to get back on course,likw a ship looking for it’s bearing, it is going to take time, and someone needs to examine where the previous captains of the ship got off course,
    we know there was some parochial selfish
    behavior was practices by the last administration,
    these interest were parochial on both an economic,
    social and political nature, we as passengers
    on the ship are at present feeling the affects
    and , i believe we need president obama and
    his administration to sort out were we went off course, i pray and wish them the best.
    isaac

  • http://NMCFS.com Johnny Couser

    For Immediate Release: Help is here. “NMCFS is willing to do their part to help with the aid of americans dealing with the economic crisis.
    In response to the numerous job layoffs within the United States and the growing demand for supplemental income, NMC Field Services, the sales, and marketing arm for National Motor Club has launched an ambitious hiring campaign to help those affected by the job downsizing crisis. We at NMCFS would like to partner with President Obama and assist him with providing jobs and opportunities to millions of americans. Effective IMMEDIATELY NMC is looking to hire and train for the following positions; Sales Representatives, Sales Managers and Sales Directors.

    NMCFS regional directors, Bill Carr and Christine Moye will spearhead this new field force expansion. The initial result will mean the addition of up to 12,000 sales leaders throughout the United States. “The expansion will be a boon to numerous local communities,” explains Eastern Regional Director, Bill Carr. “Phase one calls for immediate placement of individuals into leadership positions along with the recruitment of their staffs.”

    “This strategic decision allows us to sharpen our focus on developing our core market while providing extraordinary opportunity to individual members of our growing sales teams,” says Christine Moye, Eastern Divisional Director. For more information please contact our International Field Manager.

    Johnny Couser/ IFM
    804-255-7144
    JohnnyCouser@gmail.com

  • http://aepcmeeting2008.com/ AEPC08

    I found your blog on google, and read a few of your other posts. I just added you to my Google News Reader. Keep up the good work. Look forward to reading more from you in the future.

  • christina

    none really cares

  • Dave M. Davis

    Dear Sirs: Please send me the address where I can send payment for CD of Dreams of Obama. I mistakenly tossed out the envelope and address that I was supposed to send it to. I enjoyed the CD and would like to send my $12.95 in for to keep the CD.
    Thanks