Healing a Wounded Economy

January 25, 2009 12:00:00 AM PST
President Obama is working through his first weekend in office to heal the wounded economy."If we do not act boldly and swiftly, a bad situation could become dramatically worse." It's a theme Obama has been sounding for weeks but today he made the case for his 825 billion dollar stimulus package as president of the United States.

This is not just a short-term program to boost employment. It's one that will invest in our most important priorities like energy and education; health care and a new infrastructure that are necessary to keep us strong and competitive in the 21st century. The president met earlier this week with a bipartisan group of congressional democrats and republicans to try and reach consensus for a stimulus plan that he hopes to sign by mid-February.

However House Republican Leader John Boehner used his party's weekly address to raise concerns about Obama's proposed stimulus.

Rep. Boehner said, "We're committed to working with President Obama in search of swift, bipartisan action that creates jobs, not another Washington program that overpromises and under-delivers.

Economists said the problem is that it's tough to sell a stimulus package that may only end up stopping the bleeding; bringing the economy back to health will take much longer.

Simon Johnson an M.I.T. economist said, "It's not a magic bullet, it doesn't mean you avoid recession and it doesn't also by itself necessarily pull you out of the recession".

In his address Obama got specific, saying he wants to save or create between 3 and 4 million jobs, double America's production of renewable energy and build 3,000 miles of new electrical transmission lines. The president is expected to visit Capitol Hill early next week to make his case to Congress

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