President’s Weekly Address: Obama Urges Prompt Passage of Economic Plan

Text of President Barack Obama’s Weekly Address to the nation:

This morning I’d like to talk about some good news and some bad news as we confront our economic crisis.

The bad news is well known to Americans across our country as we continue to struggle through unprecedented economic turmoil. Yesterday we learned that our economy shrank by nearly 4 percent from October through December. That decline was the largest in over a quarter century, and it underscores the seriousness of the economic crisis that my administration found when we took office.

Already the slowdown has cost us tens of thousands of jobs in January alone. And the picture is likely to get worse before it gets better.

Make no mistake, these are not just numbers. Behind every statistic there’s a story. Many Americans have seen their lives turned upside down. Families have been forced to make painful choices. Parents are struggling to pay the bills. Patients can’t afford care. Students can’t keep pace with tuition. And workers don’t know whether their retirement will be dignified and secure.

The good news is that we are moving forward with a sense of urgency equal to the challenge. This week the House passed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Plan, which will save or create more than 3 million jobs over the next few years. It puts a tax cut into the pockets of working families, and places a down payment on America’s future by investing in energy independence and education, affordable health care, and American infrastructure.

Now this recovery plan moves to the Senate. I will continue working with both parties so that the strongest possible bill gets to my desk. With the stakes so high we simply cannot afford the same old gridlock and partisan posturing in Washington. It’s time to move in a new direction.

Americans know that our economic recovery will take years — not months. But they will have little patience if we allow politics to get in the way of action, and our economy continues to slide. That’s why I am calling on the Senate to pass this plan, so that we can put people back to work and begin the long, hard work of lifting our economy out of this crisis. No one bill, no matter how comprehensive, can cure what ails our economy. So just as we jumpstart job creation, we must also ensure that markets are stable, credit is flowing, and families can stay in their homes.

Last year Congress passed a plan to rescue the financial system. While the package helped avoid a financial collapse, many are frustrated by the results — and rightfully so. Too often taxpayer dollars have been spent without transparency or accountability. Banks have been extended a hand, but homeowners, students, and small businesses that need loans have been left to fend on their own.

And adding to this outrage, we learned this week that even as they petitioned for taxpayer assistance, Wall Street firms shamefully

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  • Gailmarie Wooten-Ward

    Dear President Obama,
    Your political campaign and subsequent election as our nation’s 44th President has caused me to do a lot of things differently! I supported you financially and even went to your Inauguration! It was awesome. But, a few days before, I became the (victim) of a RIF (reduction in workforce) as did several others. I worked for Oracle Corporation (as a Senior Customer Relations Sales Consultant)….but now I am part of the millions of unemployed. Yes, it’s scary, but I believe in God and I also believe in you! I KNOW you have the best and the brightest available to work with you as your cabinet members…So I urge you Barack, and your team to please help get us back to work! You and your family are always in my prayers…. Gailmarie

  • lamont

    The economy has to ride it out and stop worrying about financing from banks and the federal reserve. The federal reserve is putting itself out of business. Let them fail. The power elite needs to go homeless. The United States needs a new dollar that doesn’t say federal reserve note.

    Let the Federal Reserve system eat their own mistakes. Make the Federal Reserve illegal. They are ruining their own good thing(Killing the golden goose) The taxpayer. Give them all the debt they created and start with The American Citizen Dollar.

  • lamont

    Stop allowing the Banks to run the government. 99 years is enough. The people must build their lives around their families not support the the greedy NWO aristocracy puppeteers who pull the strings of the Failed Federal System. If we can not afford to buy something don’t buy it!