Sunday, January 30, 2011

President Barack Obama's 2012 Reelection Prospects

Despite the severe 'shellacking' that even he concedes he suffered in the November, his prospects are now looking up.

With the American economy continuing to recover from recession and unemployment slowly reducing, Obama is rising in public opinion polls. In some respects, he's doing better than even some of his supporters say they'd expect.

"Right now, you have the president with 55 percent job approval at nine percent unemployment, which is quite frankly fairly remarkable," said Democratic pollster Cornell Belcher. "The policies are working and I think the Americans are feeling it."

Obama has started staffing his re-election headquarters in his hometown, Chicago, and has shuffled his White House staff as well.

His potential Republican opponents aren't moving quite as fast. Former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin continues to be the most prominent potential figure in the race, but she hasn't said publicly whether she'll run.

Recent public opinion polls put Obama ahead of her and every other potential candidate the Republicans are likely to put forward.


From: http://www.cnn.com/2011/POLITICS/01/29/obama.sotu/index.html

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Weekly Address: Out-Innovating, Out-Educating & Out-Building Our Competitors

In this week’s address, President Obama called Orion Energy Systems in Manitowoc, Wisconsin an example of how America can win the future by being the best place on Earth to do business.  Orion was able to open with the help of small business loans and incentives that are creating demand for clean energy technologies.  By sparking innovation and spurring new products and technologies, America will unleash the talent and ingenuity of American workers and businesses, which will lead to new, good jobs.
Just a few years ago, this was an empty warehouse. A major employer had shut down this factory, moved its operations abroad, and took a lot of jobs away from this town.

But today, as you can see behind me, this is a thriving enterprise once more. You are looking at a factory where 250 workers are building advanced clean energy systems – state-of-the-art technologies that use solar power and energy efficiency to save farms and businesses thousands of dollars on their utility bills.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

State of The Union Address: President Obama on Social Security

President Obama on Social Security in the State of the Union address:
The bipartisan fiscal commission I created last year made this crystal clear.  I don’t agree with all their proposals, but they made important progress.  And their conclusion is that the only way to tackle our deficit is to cut excessive spending wherever we find it –- in domestic spending, defense spending, health care spending, and spending through tax breaks and loopholes.  (Applause.)

This means further reducing health care costs, including programs like Medicare and Medicaid, which are the single biggest contributor to our long-term deficit.  The health insurance law we passed last year will slow these rising costs, which is part of the reason that nonpartisan economists have said that repealing the health care law would add a quarter of a trillion dollars to our deficit.  Still, I’m willing to look at other ideas to bring down costs, including one that Republicans suggested last year -- medical malpractice reform to rein in frivolous lawsuits.  (Applause.)

To put us on solid ground, we should also find a bipartisan solution to strengthen Social Security for future generations.  (Applause.)  We must do it without putting at risk current retirees, the most vulnerable, or people with disabilities; without slashing benefits for future generations; and without subjecting Americans’ guaranteed retirement income to the whims of the stock market.  (Applause.)

Editorial Boards Continue to Praise President Obama’s State of the Union Address

By Josh Cohen from http://my.barackobama.com/page/community/post/joshcohen/gGMbcS?override_wrapper_id=7w3hc

Editorial boards from newspapers across the country continue to praise President Obama’s State of the Union address this week. Calling it “[t]he right tone for a hard time” and an “optimistic, pragmatic vision,” these editorials attest that President Obama’s speech laid out a vision for our country’s future that resonates with the American public.  Here’s what they’re saying.
Portland Press Herald: President's address a call to action on jobs.”“But after investing in better research and education, we didn't just surpass the Soviets; we unleashed a wave of innovation that created new industries and millions of new jobs."LINK
Wilmington News Journal: “Obama sets civil tone for 'shared responsibility.'”“President Obama took advantage of a brief "thaw" between Republicans and Democrats and presented a State of the Union address last night that frequently hit on issues that affect all Americans. We hope that his invitation to talk about the issues he put on the table are taken up by all sides in the same open, civil tone.” LINK
Time: “Obama's SOTU Success: Making Democrats the Party of Optimism.”“Barack Obama's 2011 State of the Union was …the beginning of a new era, a return to business as usual. LINK
San Jose Mercury News: Obama lays out optimistic, pragmatic vision.”“President Barack Obama's State of the Union address Tuesday presented a stirring but pragmatic vision for the nation, giving Americans something to rally around: The notion that the United States can still do "big things" even while confronting its massive deficit.” LINK
Courier Journal:  “Winning the future.”“The President’s tone was measured, undoubtedly so as not to seem opportunistically partisan, and Republicans seemed careful to appear respectful. …His call to invest in scientific research, new energy sources, infrastructure replacement and education were on the mark.” LINK
The Day: “President Obama: “Future is ours to win.”“In his State of the Union address Tuesday, President Barack Obama spoke of contradictory challenges facing the nation.  To compete globally and to achieve a strong economic rebound from the recent recession, the United States needs to rebuild its transportation infrastructure, expand high-speed Internet nationwide, diminish its dependence on foreign oil by investing in new energy technologies and reinvigorate an education system that lags behind other nations in student performance.” LINK
Minnesota Daily: “We can “win the future.” “But Obama’s basic point was right: We can “win the future” by reinvesting in American innovation and education.” LINK
Here are some additional headlines from editorials around the country.
Albany Times Union: For America, another Sputnik.”LINK
Boston Globe: “Obama’s stark, bold challenge: rise to this ‘Sputnik moment.”LINK
Roanoke Times: “Obama presented ideas that Republicans should be able to embrace.” LINK
Fayetteville Observer: “An inspirational speech that drew a strongly positive response in post-speech polling.”LINK
Raleigh News and Observer: “Call to reason.”LINK
Waterloo Record: “Inspiring words from a president.”LINK
Tulsa World: “President set goals for next year.”LINK
Tampa Bay Tribune: “The future of the union.”LINK
Arizona Daily Star: “Obama also highlighted the need for Democrats and Republicans to work together.”LINK

Behind-the-Scenes Video: Guests in the First Lady’s Box at the State of the Union


We caught up with some of the outstanding Americans who were invited to watch the State of the Union Address from the First Lady's box. Each of the nearly two-dozen guests has an incredible story. On the day of the President’s Address to the Nation, we asked a few of the invitees, including a wounded warrior, a STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) advocate, two ice cream shop owners and a student innovator, what their message for Americans would be. Hear what they had to say:



Staff Sergeant Brian Mast (Washington, DC)

Staff Sergeant Brian Mast is a native of Grand Rapids, Michigan, and joined the United States Army Reserves after graduating from high school in 1999. Four years ago he joined the Special Forces and was trained in bomb disposal. Staff Sergeant Mast deployed to Afghanistan in July 2010. He was seriously injured by a roadside bomb on September 19, 2010. He lost both legs just below the knee and an index finger. Staff Sergeant Mast suffered a broken arm, shrapnel wounds, and a damaged ear drum in the blast and is currently recovering at Walter Reed. Staff Sergeant Mast, his wife, Brianna, and their son, Magnum, met the Vice President and Dr. Biden at a Thanksgiving dinner for military families that the Bidens hosted at the Vice President’s Residence in November 2010.

Ursula M. Burns (Norwalk, CT)

Ursula M. Burns is the chief executive officer of Xerox Corporation. She joined Xerox in 1980 as a mechanical engineer summer intern and later assumed roles in product development and planning. From 1992 through 2000, Ms. Burns led several business teams including the office color and fax business and office network printing business. In 2000, she was named senior vice president, Corporate Strategic Services, heading up manufacturing and supply chain operations. She then took on the broader role of leading Xerox's global research as well as product development, marketing and delivery. In April 2007, Ms. Burns was named president of Xerox, expanding her leadership to also include the company's IT organization, corporate strategy, human resources, corporate marketing and global accounts. At that time, she was also elected a member of the company's Board of Directors. Ms. Burns was named chief executive officer in July 2009. Ms. Burns earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mechanical engineering from Polytechnic Institute of NYU and a Master of Science degree in mechanical engineering from Columbia University. Ms. Burns was named by the President to help lead the White House national campaign on STEM (science, technology, engineering and math) education in November 2009, and is on the board of Change the Equation, a coalition of over 100 CEOs focused on STEM education that the President announced in September 2010. She was appointed vice chair of the President’s Export Council in March 2010.

Kendra Baker and Zachary Davis (Santa Cruz, CA)

Business partners Kendra Baker and Zachary Davis had a dream of opening an organic, homemade ice cream shop in Santa Cruz, California, but had trouble finding a lender that would help finance their dream. With the help of a Recovery Act SBA loan of $250,000, Kendra and Zack were able open the doors to The Penny Ice Creamery in August 2010. The SBA Recovery Act funding allowed them to not only open the shop, but also to employ eleven people, purchase American-made equipment, and to hire nearly twenty local businesses to design and renovate the space. Kendra and Zack were so thankful for the financing help, that they posted a video on YouTube thanking the Administration and Members of Congress for their Recovery Act SBA loan. As a result of the video, the Vice President called them in November 2010 to thank them for the video and wish them good luck.


Diego Vasquez (Phoenix, AZ)
Diego Vasquez, currently a freshman at South Mountain Community College in Phoenix, Arizona, was a member of the 12 person team from Cesar Chavez High School in Laveen, Arizona that won a grant through the Lemelson-MIT Program’s InvenTeams initiative for their design of a fully adjustable motorized chair for persons who could primarily use it for physical therapy. The team decided to design the chair after seeing a friend with a disability and fellow student have some difficulty at school. The students and their families held a tamale “bake sale” so that the entire team could travel to MIT to attend EurekaFest, the Lemelson-MIT Program’s annual celebration of invention. For many members of the team, flying to Eurekafest was their first time on a plane. Diego hopes to become an aerospace engineer. Diego met the President at the October 2010 White House Science Fair where he represented his team and demonstrated their chair.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Future is Not a Gift. It is an Achievement.

In the opening words of his second State of the Union address, President Obama spoke about the challenges we face as a nation and how we can overcome them together to win the future. He spoke of the need to reward industries that grow and "take root" on our shores, and the need to out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build the rest of the world.
"At stake right now is not who wins the next election—after all, we just had an election. At stake is whether new jobs and industries take root in this country, or somewhere else. It's whether the hard work and industry of our people is rewarded. It's whether we sustain the leadership that has made America not just a place on a map, but a light to the world.

We are poised for progress. Two years after the worst recession most of us have ever known, the stock market has come roaring back. Corporate profits are up. The economy is growing again.

But we have never measured progress by these yardsticks alone. We measure progress by the success of our people. By the jobs they can find and the quality of life those jobs offer. By the prospects of a small business owner who dreams of turning a good idea into a thriving enterprise. By the opportunities for a better life that we pass on to our children.

That's the project the American people want us to work on. Together."
Check out highlights from the speech itself.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

State Of The Union: Tonight, Tomorrow And The Day After

Tonight
— Organizing for America volunteers are hosting State of the Union Watch Parties across the country. You can find one near you here.
— 9:00 p.m. President Obama delivers his second State of the Union address.
— Follow @TheDemocrats on Twitter for live updates.
— You can watch online here or check your TV listings.
— Immediately after the speech officials at the White House will be on hand to answer any questions you have about the speech. You can find information on how to take part here.

Wednesday January 26th
— Check back here at BarackObama.com for all the best parts, videos and to find out how you can work with your friends, neighbors and President Obama to win the future.

Thursday January 27th
— President Obama will answer your questions about the State of the Union via YouTube. You can find out more information and submit a question here.
— Throughout the day, White House advisors will also be available to answer questions about the speech via Facebook.
As the President said in his video message to supporters we “look forward to you tuning in on Tuesday.”
Find a place to watch with your friends and neighbors here.

From: http://my.barackobama.com/page/community/post/maryhough/gGMbSm?override_wrapper_id=7w3hc

Breaking: President Obama Will NOT Cut Social Security

As reported earlier on the blog, President Obama's poll numbers on Social Security are all time low, because Americans believe he'd side with the republicans and cut Social Security and raise retirement age.

It turns out that Obama will NOT cut Social Security or raise the retirement age. It is widely expected that President will make his stance on the issue clear on the State of the Union Address tomorrow. So make you watch President himself delivering the address, not the Fox News' opinion on what President Obama said!

Here's what others had to say about this:
"Ultimately, the president demonstrating to the American people and to the Republicans a willingness to fight and win on issues that are core issues for him will help him in the negotiating process by strengthening his hand and strengthening the resolve of people who are working with him. I think we both look forward to a bipartisan process going forward in the next two years, but we also look forward to the president showing strong leadership on critical issues and being willing to stand and fight on points where he feels that's in the best interest of the nation." - Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse (D-R.I.)
"I was very pleased to see in the media this afternoon Obama will not endorse raising the retirement age or reducing Social Security benefits. For tens of millions of American workers and senior citizens, that is very welcome news. I applaud the president for standing up for Social Security, for his understand that this is a program that has worked fantastically well for 75 years and that he is going to defend it." - Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.)

Monday, January 24, 2011

President Obama Losing Support On Social Security

President Obama has lost massive democratic support on Social Security, according to a number of recent polls progressive polls ( they are, of course, democratic but the poll numbers are facts ). But, besides that, all the polls across the country show that cutting social security benefits is disaster, and that it's not part of the solution. Roughly 85% of the country believe nobody should touch social security under any circumstance. 85% is an all-time high number. That's obvious; people put paid into it, and they want it back when they need it, as promised by the government!

However, the deficit commission put together by Obama said cut social security, in order to reduce increasing national debt. As a result, Democrats and President Obama poll numbers on Social Security plummeted. For the time, since the birth of  Social Security, Democrats, including Obama, are on the loosing end of Social Security. In other words, Americans now trust the Republicans on Social Security. That is a disaster for Obama because Americans firmly trusted Democrats on this forever, well at-least until now. This is one of the few issues Democrats do well on.

This also a disaster for the country as a whole. Who thinks Republicans, as the recent polls indicated, care about your Social Security? They can't wait to cut it. This is one of the few things George W. Bush failed to pass through the congress. Even before that, Republicans have been trying to privatize Social Security since the mid 1930s, so that Wall Street would benefit from it. They want to balance the budget off middle-class' back while protecting the rich.

If you don't trust either party on this issue, that makes sense. But be absolutely clear: the Republicans have no interest in protecting your Social Security. DON'T TRUST REPUBLICANS!!!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Obama Administration Reforming Housing Finance System And The Mortgage Servicing

While we continue to review this concept, we have found several challenges that we believe would limit this type of assistance from making any significant impact in the market. Although we are not currently pursuing this option, the Obama Administration continues to work toward reforming the housing finance system and the mortgage servicing system in a way that puts consumers first and helps keep more Americans in their homes.

- David Stevens, Federal Housing Administration Commissioner
Treasury supports alternatives that provide a graceful exit for homeowers who have experienced a hardship and cannot continue to support their mortgage. The Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HASA) Program which provides options for homeowners looking for a short sale or deed-in-lieu of foreclosure.

- U.S. Treasury Department spokeswoman Andrea Risotto
I believe there is a strong case to be made for a carefully designed guarantee in a reformed system with the objective of providing a measure of stability in access to mortgage finance even in future economic downturns.

- Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner in August

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Winning the future

Three days from now, on Tuesday, January 25th, I will stand before Congress and the country to discuss the State of the Union.

Two years ago, when I first addressed a joint session of Congress, this country faced a crisis unlike anything since the Great Depression -- an economy that had spiraled out of control, putting millions out of work.

Today, we're in a different place. An economy that was shrinking is now growing again. But across the country, millions are struggling every day -- to find work, to pay their bills, to provide for their families.

It is clear that the moment we now face demands a vision for how we as a people will win the future.

And that vision -- that agenda -- will be the topic of my State of the Union address.

As the messengers, volunteers, and organizers of this movement, you will play a critical role in carrying out that agenda. Because of that, I want you to have an advance look at what I'll ask of Congress on Tuesday.

I've recorded a short video to share that message with you. Please click here to watch it.

Watch the message from President Obama

I will talk to the nation about how we can win the future by out-innovating, out-educating, and out-building the rest of the world. By dealing with our deficits and our debt in a responsible way, and reforming government so that it's leaner and smarter for the 21st century. How we continue to keep America safe and advance our interests around the world.

But we can do it only if we all work together.

I've recorded this video so that we all know what's at stake and we're ready for the work to come.

Will you take a minute to watch it?

http://my.barackobama.com/SOTUpreview

Thank you,

Barack

Weekly Address: "We Can Out-Compete Any Other Nation"

WASHINGTON – President Obama used his weekly address to highlight the steps his administration is taking to make America more competitive. As a result of the deals made with China this week, U.S. exports to China will increase by more than $45 billion and China will increase its investments in America by several billion dollars. These deals will support some 235,000 American jobs. Also, the President named GE CEO Jeff Immelt to head up the new Council on Jobs and Competitiveness, which will help find ways to grow the economy by investing in American businesses.
Here’s the truth about today’s economy: If we’re serious about fighting for American jobs and American businesses, one of the most important things we can do is open up more markets to American goods around the world.

That’s why I met with China’s President Hu Jintao at the White House this past week. We’re now exporting more than $100 billion a year to China in goods and services. And as a result of deals we completed this week, we’ll be increasing U.S. exports to China by more than $45 billion, and China’s investments in America by several billion dollars.  Most important, these deals will support some 235,000 American jobs. And that includes a lot of manufacturing jobs.

Read the Transcript  |  Download Video: mp4 (125MB) | mp3 (3MB)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Rush Limbaugh Imitates Chinese Accent


Hu Jintao is in town, the leader of china. He participated in a state dinner. President Obama and he made a huge trade agreement with him. But as always, Rush Limbaugh has a very "different" opinion on the whole scenario. And that was the fact that the Chinese leader had an accent, and that he spoke in a different language. So, in his radio program, Rush decided to mock him.
"Hu Jintao was speaking, and they were translating. They normally translate a couple of word, but _ was going jiha tha ji go thag thi ( continued for 30 seconds ). Nobody was translating."
This sounds very strange to everybody. He imitates Chinese accent like a child. But his ill-headed republican listeners must have undoubtedly enjoyed it! Rush didn't stop there; he continued to mocked the Chinese translator as well.
Last night, Stephen Colbert helped his viewers understand just what Rush Limbaugh was saying when Limbaugh imitated the Chinese president's language with a string of sounds that might have featured in a movie or radio show from the first half of the last century.

"My favorite doughnut is every doughnut," Colbert's translation read. "When I stand up, my chair smells like a cat shelter."

From: TPM LiveWire - Colbert Calls Out Limbaugh For His Chinese Impression

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Republicans Vote to Repeal Health Reform

From OFA Blog

Thousands of Organizing for America volunteers campaigned yesterday in support of health reform. They told lawmakers across the country how important the Affordable Care Act is to millions of Americans, millions of families and to our economy.

Today, Republicans in the House of Representatives ignored the reasoned and impassioned views and experiences of their constituents and all 242 Republican members voted to repeal health reform. This was a vote in favor of increasing the deficit by $230 billion; a vote in favor of allowing insurance companies to deny coverage to those with pre-existing conditions; a vote to take away the benefits that millions of Americans are already receiving because of the Affordable Care Act.

This is not the end of the fight. Today’s vote will not lead to the immediate repeal of health reform. President Obama and Democrats in the Senate have vowed to do all they can to stop this becoming law. But it is the start of Republican attempts to undo all the progress we’ve made. Over the next two years they will try all that they can to take away from Americans the progress we’ve made--starting with health reform.

It’s up to us to defend our achievements, to stand up for the American people. We need all of us to stand together to protect our progress--join the fight here.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Weekly Address: President Obama: "Before We are Democrats or Republicans, We are Americans"

In this week’s address, President Obama said that once business resumes in Washington, he looks forward to working with members of both parties to meet the challenges facing the country. By working together in a spirit of common cause, the President and members of Congress can face these challenges in a way worthy of the voters who sent them to Washington.


Read the Transcript  |  Download Video: mp4 (87MB) | mp3 (2MB)

Friday, January 14, 2011

Angry Violent Comments By The Republicans

"I hope that's not where we're going, but you know if this Congress keeps going the way it is, people are really looking toward those Second Amendment remedies and saying my goodness what can we do to turn this country around? I'll tell you the first thing we need to do is take Harry Reid out." --Nevada GOP Senate nominee and Tea Party favorite Sharron Angle, floating the possibility of armed insurrection, interview with right-wing talk radio host Lars Larson in Portland, OR, January 2010
"I want people in Minnesota armed and dangerous on this issue of the energy tax, because we need to fight back. Thomas Jefferson told us, having a revolution every now and then is a good thing. And the people - we the people - are going to have to fight back hard if we're not going to lose our country." -- Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN). She's specifically saying if we don't get what we want, let go grab guns.
"I tell people don't kill all the liberals. Leave enough so we can have two on every campus – living fossils – so we will never forget what these people stood for." - Rush Limbaugh, Denver Post, 12-29-95
"When contemplating college liberals, you really regret once again that John Walker is not getting the death penalty. We need to execute people like John Walker in order to physically intimidate liberals, by making them realize that they can be killed, too. Otherwise, they will turn out to be outright traitors". -- Ann Coulter
“I’m thinking of killing Michael Moore, and I’m wondering if I could kill him myself, or if I could hire somebody to do it…no, I think I could. I think he could be looking me in the eye, you know, and I could just be choking the life out of him. Is that wrong?” -- Glenn Beck on Killing Michael Moore

Thursday, January 13, 2011

President Obama in Tucson: "The Forces that Divide Us are Not as Strong as Those that Unite Us"

Last night the President spoke to an emotional crowd at a memorial event in Tucson, Arizona. The grief for the victims of the tragic shooting there was overwhelming, but so too was the admiration for the heroes who risked their lives to prevent even greater loss, as well as the hope for the survivors to see full recoveries. The President asked those in the hall and across America to channel their emotions toward the pursuit of a more perfect union, saying that "If this tragedy prompts reflection and debate -- as it should -- let’s make sure it’s worthy of those we have lost." Watch the President's remarks in full:

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Tea Party Raises Money off of Arizona Shooting

The Tea Party Express, a division of the Tea Party movement in California, sent out a letter to supporters Monday requesting donations in reaction to Saturday’s shooting at a political event in Tucson, Arizona that claimed six lives.

The letter, which says that “liberals are trying to exploit the shooting,” comes less than two days after Arizona U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords was shot in the head.

http://www.thestatecolumn.com/blog/2011/01/tea-party-raises-money-off-of-arizona-shooting/
The Tea Party Express letter reads as follows:

Dear Friends:

The attack on conservatives and the tea party movement has continued over the past 24 hours. Media figures and liberal activists continue to falsely suggest that Rush Limbaugh, Gov. Sarah Palin and the tea party movement had anything to do with the shooting of Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords.

They’ve launched this attack even though they know it is a total and complete lie.

During the past few days friends of the shooter, Jared Loughner, have stepped forward to say that they knew him to be a political liberal. He admired the Communist Manifesto and burned the American flag.*

But many in the news media and the political Left are nonetheless still trying to use this awful tragedy to make people think that somehow Limbaugh, Palin and the tea party were responsible for this attack.

They are doing it for one reason: it is an attempt to silence us and make this patriotic, constitutionalist movement controversial – so they can try and stop the momentum this tea party movement has built.

Last night on MSNBC and liberal websites, we here at the Tea Party Express were called despicable and shameless because we won’t back down.

Well guess what, friends – we’re not going to back down. Not when we have nothing to apologize for, and certainly we won’t just sit back while the media and liberals think they can slander us by calling us responsible for a mass murder.

Instead, do you know what we’re going to do? We’re going to fight back with even more determination and pride. Since we have to “pay” to get our message heard (the liberal media bias is on display like never before with this tragedy), we’re asking our supporters to help us fight back.

We want to have our largest fundraising day in the history of our organization and we need your help to achieve this success. Please, make a contribution online right now to the Tea Party Express – CLICK HERE TO CONTRIBUTE.

http://www.slate.com/blogs/blogs/weigel/archive/2011/01/11/tea-party-express-calls-jared-lee-loughner-liberal-fundraises-off-of-media-slander.aspx

Sunday, January 9, 2011

John Boehner Can't Name A Single Program He'd Cut

Bryan Williams ask JOhn Boehner a simple question when he was doing an interview, but, apparently, Boehner was unprepared for: name a program that he would cut so that it would reduce the national debt. Boehner's answer:
“I don’t think I have one off the top of my head. But there is no part of this government that should be sacred. I believe there’s room, to find savings in the Department of Defense. There are a lot of needs at the Department of Defense. And I think Secretary Gates has a reasonable plan to allow the service chiefs to go in there and root out wasteful spending, so they can find the money that they’re going to need to make sure that we have the weapons of the future.”

The Cost of Repeal: "In the neighborhood of a trillion dollars"

Yesterday, Washington Post columnist Ezra Klein took a look at the financial cost of repeal. In the process, he dismantled Republican Majority Leader Eric Cantor's argument that health reform increases the deficit. The explanation—though complex—is not complicated, as shown in the chart below:



The take-away?
"Roughly speaking, new spending is what counts as "benefits." Those are the lines shooting up. New taxes are the lighter blue part of bars pointing down. In years one, two, and three, new benefits are larger than or matched with new taxes. In year four, that's not true, but the difference is fairly small. And in the six years after that, even Cantor admits the benefits match or overwhelm the taxes.
...As for the period "beyond the 10-year window," the Congressional Budget Office -- which is now comparing "apples to apples," as the law is delivering full benefits for all 10 of the next 10 years -- says the law saves vastly more money in its second decade: "The legislation will reduce federal deficits during the decade beyond the 10-year budget window relative to those projected under current law—with a total effect in a broad range around one-half percent of GDP." That's in the neighborhood of a trillion dollars."
Klein also addressed why this part of the debate is so important:
"If, in the repeal fight, it becomes widely understood that the bill reduces the deficit, it will become more popular. So it's crucial, as the repeal effort goes forward, for Republicans to become much more brazen in falsely asserting that the bill doesn't really reduce the deficit, and that even if the CBO does say it reduces the deficit, that they're saying that because they've been tricked somehow. But CBO wasn't tricked. If it were, Cantor, who has a staff dedicated to figuring these things out, would have a better argument than the one he's offering."
If you agree, add your name to protect our progress here.

by Christopher Hass - http://my.barackobama.com/page/community/post/obamaforamerica/gGMKDj

Weekly Address: Tax Cuts Kicking In

WASHINGTON – In his weekly address, President Obama looked forward to how the tax cut package he signed into law in December will benefit millions of Americans in the new year. For one year, any business, large or small, can write off the full cost of most of their capital investments. The payroll tax cut will mean $1,000 more this year for a typical family – 155 million workers will see larger paychecks because of that tax cut. Twelve million families will benefit from a $1,000 child tax credit and an expanded Earned Income Tax Credit. And eight million students and families will continue to benefit from a $2,500 tuition tax credit. Independent experts have concluded that the tax cut package should significantly accelerate the pace of the recovery.



Posted by Jesse Lee on January 08, 2011

Friday, January 7, 2011

“The Consequences of Repeal”

The 112th Congress is being sworn in today. For the first time in four years Republicans are in control of the House of Representatives. This afternoon Mitch Stewart, Director of Organizing for America, has written to supporters asking them to come together to protect the reforms they fought so hard for.
Our progress is under attack.

Their majority is not even a day old, but House Republicans are already getting ready to pass a bill to repeal health reform.

Instead of focusing on the future, they want to put insurance companies back in charge of our health care. To go back to the days when these companies could deny coverage to children based on pre-existing conditions, cancel coverage when people would get sick, or limit the care you could receive—even when you needed more. When seniors would be forced to choose between paying their mortgage and paying for their prescription drugs, simply because they landed in the "donut hole" in coverage.

They want to turn our progress into a partisan fight.

But you and I know that the Affordable Care Act and other reforms to protect consumers did not pass because of a partisan or ideological agenda.

They passed because millions of Americans stood up and said we were ready for commonsense solutions after years of fraud and abuse, for a new era of responsibility after unchecked power. They passed because, after 100 years of debate and negotiation, we said we would wait no longer for health reform.

These reforms passed because of you. Now, we must prepare to stand up for them again.

Organizing for America is pulling together a team of organizers and volunteers to defend reform—and we need you on this team. Together, we'll show how our progress is already improving lives across the country—and take on those who are pushing for repeal.

Join the fight to protect our progress and keep Congress focused on the future.

It's clear that's not where House Republicans are looking—they're putting the car in reverse and heading straight toward the ditch that we just spent two years climbing out of.

As the President said this week, we are still emerging from a recession that took a toll on millions of families, many of whom are still trying to get their lives back on track. The Affordable Care Act and Wall Street reform were important steps forward on the road to recovery, and we can't afford to play political games with them now.

We have an obligation to ensure our progress is not rewritten by the insurance industry and big banks.

This year, we'll need to stand by the President as he works to grow our economy, make the United States more competitive, and keep moving the country forward—but we're also going to have to work hard to defend what we have already achieved.

Join the campaign to protect our progress.

Thanks,

Mitch

Mitch Stewart
Director
Organizing for America
Join the fight to protect our progress here.

By Mary Hough - Jan 5, 2011 2:23:40 PM ET

The Employment Situation in December

Today’s employment report shows that private sector payrolls increased by 113,000 in December, capping 12 consecutive months of growth that added 1.3 million private sector jobs to the economy during 2010, the strongest private sector job growth since 2006. The unemployment rate fell 0.4 percentage point to 9.4 percent last month.

The overall trend of economic data over the past several months has been encouraging, due in large part to the initiatives passed by this Administration, but we still have a ways to go. The measures we worked with Congress to pass last month that continue tax cuts for the middle class and extensions to unemployment insurance are vital to sustaining the recovery. The Administration will also continue to focus on actions that the President has recommended to increase growth and job creation, such as providing incentives to encourage businesses to invest and hire here at home, investing in education and infrastructure, and promoting exports abroad.

In addition to the increases last month, the estimates of private sector job growth for October (now 193,000) and November (now 79,000) were revised up. Including today’s revisions, private sector employers have added an average of 128,000 jobs per month in the 4th quarter, the highest quarterly average in almost four years.

Continue reading: White House Blog

Posted by Austan Goolsbee on January 7, 2011 at 9:40 AM EST

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Weekly Address: Democrats and Republicans Have Shared Responsibility to Move America Forward

WASHINGTON – In his weekly address, President Obama resolved to do everything he can to make sure the economy is growing, creating jobs, and strengthening the middle class in the new year. With each party controlling one house of the Congress, Democrats and Republicans will share the responsibility to move the country forward, and the President reiterated his commitment to work with anyone who has a good idea in either party.



From: http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2011/01/01/weekly-address-new-year
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