October 31st, 2008
04:18 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama's top priorities for '09

Sen. Barack Obama in an interview Friday with CNN's Wolf Blitzer.
Sen. Barack Obama in an interview Friday with CNN's Wolf Blitzer.

(CNN) - Sen. Barack Obama told CNN Friday that turning around the economy and energy independence are his top priorities for 2009 if elected president.

In an interview with Wolf Blitzer in Des Moines, Iowa, Obama was asked to name his top priority from a list of issues, including taxes, health care, education, energy policy and immigration.

"[The] top priority may not be any of those five. It may be continuing to stabilize the financial system. We don't know yet what's gonna happen in January," he said. "None of this can be accomplished if we continue to see a potential meltdown in the banking system and financial system. So that's priority number one - making sure the plumbing works."

Obama said priority number 2 is energy independence:

"We have to seize this moment because it's not just an energy independence issue, it's also a national security issue and it's a jobs issue. We can create five million new green energy jobs ..."

You can watch the full interview on ‘The Situation Room’ at 6 p.m. ET.

Priority number 3: Healthcare reform.

Priority number 4: "Making sure we have tax cuts for the middle class as part of a broader tax reform effort."

Obama later expanded his discussion on how tax cuts relate to a bigger economic plan.

"The tax cut that I talked about may be part of my priority number one because I think that’s going to be part of stabilizing the economy as a whole," he said.

"I think we’re going to need a second stimulus. Part of my commitment is to make sure that the stimulus includes a tax cut for 95 percent of working Americans. It may be the first bill I introduce."

Priority number 5: Reforming the education system.


Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Race to '08
soundoff (542 Responses)
  1. MO Vote for Change

    Hey Mike...stabilizing the economy WILL make us safer...modernizing and upgrading our energy sources WILL make us safer...a whole lot more than 4000+ needless deaths have done.

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  2. wakeupamerica

    Love you Barack!

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  3. Monica from Albuquerque

    I hove total faith in the Obama Administration

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  4. Liz, AR

    Going to see Barack and Michelle in Springfield, MO tomorrow night~! I can't wait and I can't wait till we can take our country back!!

    Go Obama!

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  5. Obama 08

    I agree... we can't do anything about anything if our economy is down the tubes.

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  6. Alex

    Mike

    Don't live in fear, life is short.

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  7. pd

    What about the WAR!!!

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  8. Liz the Young Voter

    Doesn't it seem like Obama's already been elected? He's so presidential, it's astounding.
    Where is McCain? Someone flinging mud around secretly wishing it was Nov. 5th already so he can retreat into a low-profile hermit like existence for the rest of his life, forever marred by his deplorable campaign?
    Yeah, that's what I thought.

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  9. Mark

    2012 we will be looking back to the long list of Obama's empty promises.

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  10. JM

    Dream on Barak

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  11. johnq

    Looks like the liberal media has placed the next president. Sorry day for America. Those of you supporting him will be sorry when the education comes. I expect the tone of this section to change dramatically as will the country.

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  12. tonyP

    take the money from rich oilmen and give it to rich turbine and solar panel men... while the people get screwed.. change we can believe in

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  13. Diane, GA

    Mike I think we need the money to keep us safe. How can you invest in the military or anything else if you have no money? Unless you're content with continuing to borrow money from China.

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  14. JAY N.H.

    Does anyone else see what Bush has been doing to influence this race? First we launch a strike in Syria where civilians were killed and today another strike in Pakistan where 28 people were killed.

    October 31, 2008 04:29 pm at 4:29 pm |
  15. Karen

    For Mike:

    Energy independance will make us more secure.

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  16. Wendy in NC

    For those rather paranoid ultra-conservatives that are so afraid of Obama and fear for our national security, let me explain something to you. Al-Quaeda's attack on 9/11 was economic, i.e. destroy the WTC – the economic center of the country and then attack the HQ of government. What he has done has been successful beyond his dreams – look where we are now. We jumped into two wars, one illegally and based on false info that was "leaked", and we are now in a huge economic mess. Osama bin Laden would love to see McCain elected because he knows that any new attack would result in the Cowboy 'shoot first, ask questions later' that would further destroy us both economically and global respect. We need someone who is deliberate, thoughtful, intelligent and who LISTENS to everyone. The most important quality of any leader is to listen. My trust is in Obama.

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  17. Ghost

    It's nice to see a candidate sticking to the issues. All the garbage from McCain is appalling.

    Make sure you get out and VOTE Nov. 4th

    Happy Halloween Everyone

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  18. Abu Bhuiyan

    Barack will be an excellent President in U.S. History but his challenges are manifold. Let's hope for the best.

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  19. Politically Speaking

    Mike October 31st, 2008 4:10 pm ET

    Why would his first priority not be keeping us safe? Does it matter if I have a windmill in my yard to give me electricity if I'm dead?
    -------------------------------

    National security is a given. We all know that. Obama is listing priorities to turn America's direction around. I'm so sick of hearing about what war to wage next, let's talk about getting out of this hole we're in.

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  20. Ethan

    Brilliant. 32 and younger folks: grab 5 of your friends and BARACK THE VOTE!

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  21. Leah DiMarco, Texas

    Our next president will be a man of integrity, intelligence, good judgment, grace, and humility.

    Obama '08

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  22. Bubba

    Nice to see SOMEONE who's calm and thinking about the future. McCain, look at your chaotic campaign and the nutcase you picked as VP, and just resign, ok? You'd be a disaster. Let the young people pick up the reins; it's time.

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  23. J.S.

    Why doesn't he tell the Los Angeles Times to release the tape of him, Ayres and the Khalidi before the election? Does he have something to hide??

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  24. McCain's priorities

    Since McCain claimed he is not an expert, he is going to ask Sarah to name the priorities

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  25. Michael in Houston

    Good start Obama. And of course National Security will always be a top priority no matter who is President, that's pretty much a given Mike.

    October 31, 2008 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
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