Remarks of President Barack Obama

out of every ten Californians is out of work. You’ve got one of the highest foreclosure rates in the nation. And budget cuts are threatening the jobs of thousands of teachers across this state. But here’s what I want you to know: we are not only going to make it through this crisis, we are going to come out on the other side a stronger and more prosperous nation. I can’t tell you how long it will take or what obstacles we will face along the way, but I can promise you this – there will be brighter days ahead.

We’re already seeing signs of progress. Because of the Recovery Act that your two outstanding senators, Senator Feinstein and Senator Boxer worked so hard to pass and that I signed into law the other week, a new hospital will be built at Camp Pendleton that will give our servicemen and women the care they deserve. Over in Inglewood, the police department is planning to expand its staff by thirty people. And Orange County is hoping to add a new lane on SR-91, creating about 2,000 jobs, and easing congestion in the process. These are just a few of the 396,000 jobs we will create or save in California – and the 3.5 million jobs we will create or save across America – over the next two years.

We are also taking unprecedented steps to unlock our frozen credit markets so families can get the loans they need to buy a home or a car; and businesses can pay for inventory or make payroll. That’s why earlier this week, we took a sweeping step to free up loans for entrepreneurs, helping them start and grow the small businesses that employ half our private sector workers. That’s why we are creating a fund that will help support up to $1 trillion in loans, including auto loans and college loans. And that’s why we’ve launched a housing plan that will help responsible homeowners save money by refinancing their mortgage loans.

None of this will make any difference, however, unless we strengthen our economy over the long-term; unless we put our economy on a firmer footing by rebuilding its foundation. And that’s exactly the purpose of the budget I’m submitting to Congress. It’s a budget that makes hard choices about where to save and where to spend. Because of the massive deficit we inherited and the cost of this financial crisis, we are going through our books line by line so that we can cut our deficit in half by the end of my first term and reduce it by $2 trillion over the next decade. But what we will not cut are investments that will lead to real growth and real prosperity – investments that will make a difference in the lives of this generation and future generations.

Because spiraling health care costs are crushing families, dragging down our entire economy, and represent one of the fastest growing parts of our budget, we’ve made an historic

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