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By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

9/16/2013 (6 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

President to make rose garden speech about efforts to shore up U.S. Economy

In the final days of George W. Bush's tenure in office, the United States economy went into an unbridled free fall. Lehman Brothers declared bankruptcy in 2008, plunging the nation into a profound recession. When Obama took office in January of 2009, he took controversial steps to stabilize the U.S. Economy. Five years later, the president is about to give a rose garden speech on the steps his administration took, and the progress that has been made. Many republicans have described Obama's measures as "mediocre" as best, and that much more work needs to be done.

The president's scheduled visit to the Ford plant is being interpreted that the White House plans to tout its accomplishments with the auto industry.

The president's scheduled visit to the Ford plant is being interpreted that the White House plans to tout its accomplishments with the auto industry.

Article Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

9/16/2013 (6 months ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Recession, president Obama, auto industry, criticism


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - House Speaker John Boehner maintains that economic growth remains shaky and national debt continues to grow. "The sooner President Obama starts working with both parties to . solve Washington's spending problem, the stronger our economy will be for all Americans," Boehner says.

It also appears that the American public doesn't view the economic situation through rose-colored glasses. Six in 10 Americans told Gallup last month that economic conditions are getting worse. An economist at the University of California, Berkeley, found this month that 95 percent of income gains from 2009 to 2012 went to the top one percent of earners.

The sluggish economic growth the U.S. has experienced since the economic crash of 2008 has primarily favored top earners, or the very rich -- while incomes for the vast majority of people have remained bogged down.

The president did admit in an interview that the rich have fared far better than the poor during his time in the White House.

"The folks in the middle and at the bottom haven't seen wage or income growth, not just over the last three, four years, but over the last 15 years," the president said on ABC's "This Week with George Stephanopoulos."

The president's scheduled visit to the Ford plant is being interpreted that the White House plans to tout its accomplishments with the auto industry.

General Motors, Chrysler Group and Ally Financial, the finance firm then known as GMAC, received $79.7 billion in both 2008 and 2009. While some of that assistance came in the form of loans, most of it was given to the companies in return for their stock. Stock sales, dividend and loan payments together have returned only $52.7 billion to the government, leaving a $27 billion deficit.

Obama's handling of the auto bailout was controversial at the time and became a sensitive topic during his 2012 election. Then GOP nominee Mitt Romney argued that the White House should have allowed the auto companies to go into a structured bankruptcy.

Senior economic adviser to the president Gene Sperling maintains that while the economic decisions the Obama administration made in 2009 were controversial, such as the Troubled Asset Relief Program, the auto bailout and revamped banking regulations - all have done much better than expected.

"These very difficult, bold and politically controversial measures that the president took in 2009 have uniformly performed better than almost anyone could have projected," Sperling, the outgoing director of the National Economic Council, said on a call with reporters.

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