Obama: Economy causing many 'incredible pain' - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Obama: Economy causing many 'incredible pain'

WASHINGTON. - President Barack Obama says the economy is causing a lot of families "incredible pain and hardship" but the government is providing them help.

The president spoke to reporters in the Oval Office on Friday after getting an update from economic adviser Paul Volcker. Obama said his administration is working on both short-term help and long-term economic recovery plans. He says the capacity of American workers and industry is undiminished.

Obama said the goal is a new "post-bubble" economic model. He says the days of relying on an inflated housing market and maxed-out credit cards are over.


How will the Recovery Act work?
Very soon, the different agencies -- such as the Departments of Education; Health and Human Services; and Energy -- will decide who will receive award grants and contracts. Sometimes the money will go to a state government; other times, the funds will go directly to a school, hospital, contractor, or other organization. Agencies will then deliver that information to the Recovery.gov team. We will subsequently make the information available on Recovery.gov, and you will be able to track where the money is going. You'll be able to search by state or even by Congressional district; you'll be able to look up names of Federal contractors or other recipients of Federal dollars; and you'll be able to send in comments, thoughts, ideas, questions, and any responses you have to what you find. More from Recovery.gov.

Meanwhile Asian markets are responding positively to the longest string of gains on Wall Street since November. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner was in London Friday meeting about the global recession, a day after President Obama told business leaders the crisis is not as bad as we think.

The president told business leaders real confidence will come from fixing the economy's underlying problems. But what he calls underlying his budget critics call unrelated, goals they say should wait.

After three up days on Wall Street, the president resists using the market to measure his progress.

President Obama said "I'm the Object-in-Chief of this varying assessment."

The Obama budget is now the object of bipartisan heat.

Critics resist billions aimed at health care and at a price tag that could turn off foreign investors.
New Hampshire Senator Judd Gregg said "saying 'Why would we invest in the United States? When we're gonna see a massive expansion of the government, that will burden in the country in a way it can't afford' " 

Friday, China's premier worried about the safety of its loans to the U.S., an alarm bell ahead of the G-20 meeting on the global economy.

David Hawley of the International Monetary Fund said "economic problems have no boundaries. Americans will benefit if their trading partners across the world return to prosperity and are growing markets for american goods and services."

Budget critics balked too at goal overload.

Wisconsin Congressman Paul Ryan said "we shouldn't be engaging in all these other things until we fix the financial crisis. You can't do these issues unless you get out of a recession."

To that the president shot back, and said "Boy, these Obama people, they're really ambitious. They're taking on health care, they're taking on energy, they're taking on education. Don't they know that there's this bank crisis right now? We can't wait to make the investments today that will lead to tomorrow's prosperity."

A political fight over how best to end the recession. 

Friday, Vice President Biden announced stimulus help for Amtrak. Republicans want to track stimulus dollars and GOP senators have asked for an independent audit of how the money is spent.

 

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