February 14th, 2009
11:34 AM ET
6 years ago

Obama praises Congress for passing a 'major milestone'

President Obama praised Congress for passing the $787 billion economic stimulus bill.

President Obama praised Congress for passing the $787 billion economic stimulus bill.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - In his weekly address, President Obama praised Congress for passing the $787 billion economic stimulus package Friday, saying its efforts "delivered a real and tangible progress for the American people."

Obama, who lobbied House and Senate members of both parties, said in his address released Saturday that the bill passage marks a "major milestone on our road to recovery."

Watch: Obama's weekly address

"I want to thank the members of Congress who came together in common purpose to make it happen," he said. "Because they did, I will sign this legislation into law shortly, and we'll being making the immediate investments necessary to put people back to work doing the work America needs done."

Obama also promised greater transparency in how the taxpayers' dollars are being spent.

"Once the plan is put into action, a new website -– recovery.gov -– will allow any American to watch where the money goes and weigh in with comments and questions –- and I encourage every American to do so," he said. "Ultimately, this is your money, and you deserve to know where it's going and how it's spent."

But Alaska Sen. Lisa Murkowski, in the weekly Republican address, said Obama's stimulus plan is not timely, targeted or temporary enough to jumpstart the flailing economy.

Murkowski also took aim at the high price tag - namely the amount of spending found in the bill.

Watch: Murkowski airs her concerns

"All this spending adds up, and has to be paid back — paid back by our children and their children. And, as of now, the American people don’t have the facts about the total cost," she said. “As a mother, I can say from experience that it doesn’t make much sense to plan the family vacation before you figure out whether you can afford it. Yet that’s just what Democrats seem to be doing."

Filed under: Congress • President Obama
soundoff (226 Responses)
  1. Proud Soldeirs Mom

    Gotta love all the blogbots programmed to defend BO no matter what the subject. LOL

    February 14, 2009 01:13 pm at 1:13 pm |
  2. go away mongers -Ventura CA

    Thank you DEMS for caring about "Country First". The gop is DOA.Their actions speak for themselves.

    February 14, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  3. The Rector

    This country is still paying for world war 1, this money will never be "paid back". The banking system requires that governments and taxpayers alike owe more than they can ever "pay back". This is why Andrew Jackson outlawed preditory banking practices during his administration, and why we had no national debt when he left office. This stimulus package will only stimulate the further concentration of wealth in this supposedly free country. I hate to say it but when the government borrows money from other countries to prop up failed buisness interests, and lets them do as they will with said monies, that is worse than socialism, its theft and fraud. We live in a slave state where we are all subserviant to the IRS, all thanks to Lincolin and his unconstitutional war of conquest, which by the way had nothing to do with freeing black people, but certainly cemented the iron grip of a federal system of government which is exectly like the monarchy that we fought against in the revolution. Obama is a puppet just like all the rest of them so don't be surprised by the lack of leadership and change that is to come, as always, just enough will be done for a tiny number of people with maximum press exposure to make the case that they are doing something. If you want change stop paying your taxes until this government addresses some of the catastrofic short commings of this countrys retoric in regards to support for it's own future, remember they can't lock up all of us, especialy if we stop paying them to step on our necks and crush our childrens hope for a future.

    February 14, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  4. C Spurgeon

    Well I support it and hope it works but I sure didn't see any relief for the elderly on fixed income and I see no Cc relief. They are continuing to raise rate to exorbitant levels even when no payments missed or late. This is going to force more bankruptcies even for those trying to meet their responsibilities.

    I support him though and have high hopes for the country. At least there is a chance with the greedy party of no out in the cold. Lets get rid of some more in the 2010 elections and that goes for any do nothing lawmakers in bioth parties. We need term limits.

    February 14, 2009 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  5. Sara from Arizona

    Grand theft of the taxpayer!!!

    February 14, 2009 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  6. yuri

    Kudos to the bill. But the VA and the military were given a raw deal, leading to some disappointment. One wonders about the benefits for the wounded/disabled veterans who put their precious lives, willingly, in harm's way.

    February 14, 2009 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  7. Texas Trail Kitty

    Rob Stumpf – February 14th, 2009 12:30 pm ET – Obama is digging himself into a very deep hole. It's not bad enough that he talks the economy DOWN (for his own political benefit), but his recent demonstration that he'll roll over for Nancy Pelosi is potentially a very dangerous thing.

    Rob, judging from your snippy comments, I gather that you are fully employed and not hurting. Not doing anything while America's financial and housing markets collapsed was criminal and Bush/Cheney et al. should be jailed. If a foreign country had caused this damage you would be furious, but since it was only the 'beloved' Republican party's neglect, well that's okay. By all means, if we get stimulus checks, please return yours or donate it to charity. But since you don't have real solution, why don't we just chill and see if President Obama's plan makes any kind of difference. Good plan or bad plan, at least he cares enough to try. That's more than can be said of those gonad-less Republicans.

    February 14, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  8. Joe in NJ

    "February 14th, 2009 12:34 pm ET

    I applaud the effort of the Democrats to provide SOMETHING instead of nothing as a solution to the economic crisis.......... You'd think that someone who calls theirselves a republican would understand the term comes from to words…REpresent… the PUBLIC's good and welfare."

    Better to do nothing than SOMETHING which many people feel, including a number of economists, will only make matters worse. And I think the Republicans (and 7 Dems) are representing the public's good and welfare by voting no.

    February 14, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  9. lc

    We will see the results at least 2 years from now so let's not hold our breath...this stuff is messy and takes time to fix. Remember that people. Fix your own finances first before you start complaining.

    February 14, 2009 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  10. NC

    major milestone, more like pelosi's major porky spending milestone bill. this bill is full of favors and kickbacks for all that voted for it. should have let the economy work itself out, it would be less of a burden in the future.

    February 14, 2009 01:17 pm at 1:17 pm |
  11. Not stupid inSC

    Jessica-Independent, you either do not have children, nor any children you care about or you are too old to really understand. Hats off to you Dan.
    CW how you can watch and read the news and say what you said about Bush & Company, and illegal behavior on Wall Street (which lead to the current financial crisis) puzzles me. If you can read you should be able to understand that no way in God;s planet could Bush have caused a problem that already existed.? Obama is only adding to the debt and who do you think has to pay for it? Do you want to leave your children with this legacy? If so you certainly better have them educated to fill a upper end 6 figure job salary.

    February 14, 2009 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  12. Nevada Independant

    It is a shame that the Republicans were able to sully Obama's attempts to bring them into the fold.
    Is the stimulous package perfect? Probably not.

    Would it have been a better package if Republicans had actually been serious about coming up with a cooperative effort? Of course.

    But, the Republicans never had any intention of helping this legislation reach a version that both parties could largely support.
    That would have made Obama look good.
    That would have meant that he was fulfilling his promise of bipartisan efforts under his administration.
    The last thing the Republicans want is for Obama to be perceived as having lived up to his promises. And, they certainly don't want to be seen as agreeing with anything he suggests.
    The Republicans are still trying to create a need for themselves. If they admit that both parties can work together and actually agree on some things, then I think they feel like tehy'll lose their power.
    So, they rant on and on about how terrible Obama is and his plans, never even considering them.
    The Republicans have NO intention of working with Obama. They just want to make him look bad so they can trash him in 4 years.
    Really mavericky, guys.

    February 14, 2009 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  13. Mitchell from MS

    What milstone? The fact is he ran down the economy to get a bill pushed through congress.

    The bill was 1100 pages long and not one member of congress read the whole thing! By the way was this a BIPARTISIAN effort? NO, I am so happy because now when this bill FAILS the DEMS will be the only ones to blame.

    Oh by the way CNN the DOW is falling yet again today. It appears Wall Street does not share your view of your messiah!

    Since the DEMS took over in 2006 the DOW is down almost 5000 points. Way to go DEMS..... Or should I say way to go COMMRADES!

    February 14, 2009 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  14. Scott

    The Republicans complaining about spending?? These are the same idiots that rubber stamped everything that Bush sent their way, including two wars costing over $150 billion a year. In fact one economist on NPR pointed out that Iraq alone is going to cost us THE TAXPAYERS over $2 trillion after its all said and done......where the hell were the Republicans sense of fiscal responsibility then? Nowhere, because they are partisan tools. When Bush wants to put us in debt for his purposes its ok by them, when Obama wants to spend money to try to help the economy its evil "socialism". For the love of Pete the Republicans need a clue. Wake up people.

    February 14, 2009 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  15. Larry

    The debt load we are taking on will hurt future generations for decades as our currency is diminished against all other currencies of the world, making our country's exports worth far less, while making all imports (including oil and cars) far more expensive for all of us. With Social Security estimated to go negative in 2017, our country is facing bankruptcy.

    I think it is an insult to our intelligence that, the President will host what the White House is billing as a “fiscal responsibility” summit on Monday February 23.

    February 14, 2009 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  16. Michael M, Phoenix AZ

    One way to keep OUR money at home, is to go back to buying US Savings Bonds. That way the money goes back into the Treasury Dept's coffers instead ending up in China or someother 3rd World country....plus you can earn more interest than the banks currently pay (or don't pay).

    February 14, 2009 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  17. Soldier girl

    Good job Mr President!

    February 14, 2009 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  18. MS

    Let's see, Republicans who spent like drunken sailors on illegal war, corrupt Wall Street honchos, bank thieves (CEOs), oil interests – NOW want to put stop spending FOR American transportation, education, homes, jobs, workers, businessmen, teachers, Hmmm. Can we spell "dinosaurs"? Go get 'em, pres! And continue to help us help ourselves.

    February 14, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  19. Republicans suck

    Great work, Mr. President. The Republicans have been obstructing this because they do not want you to succeed. The Republican leadership clearly doesn't care about America. Shame on them.

    February 14, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  20. Willis

    Where was Congresswoman Murkey when we were dumping billions of dollars a month into Iraq??? What's our return on that investment? These people need to shutup and start doing their job. I seriously doubt she had any problems giving 700 billion to the banks in the form of TARP. Now that the tax payers are getting some of the money she wants to get all conservative on us. Right!

    February 14, 2009 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  21. Anti-Obama

    Of course this forum`s full of love and praise for Saint Obama-the Messiah can do no wrong,yet Bush is Hitler.You liberal loons are really insane

    February 14, 2009 01:24 pm at 1:24 pm |
  22. Anti-Obama

    The reasion no Republican supported the "stimulus" is because...IT IS NOT A STIMULUS!!! It is just another big-government pork-ridden spending bill that might as well be the annual budget.

    February 14, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  23. Darwin

    The good doctor uses as a basis to his argument that
    there is a sizeable portion of the population that does not want to work, intends to live off the efforts of others. That premise is a false one – the vast number of the law- abiding, adult population with mostly families of their own, are interested in succeeding in life – through their own efforts. To argue from the opposite point of view betrays a definite arrogance in temperament and philosophy.

    February 14, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  24. Willis

    Most senseless liberal argument ever: because BUSH spend too much money, that means no one can question OBAMA spending too much money! Complete nonsense.

    "Past error is no excuse for its own perpetuation."
    –Robert Kennedy

    Where were you during the Bush tragedy? Why don't you voice your complaints to the administration that got us into this mess???

    February 14, 2009 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  25. thomas

    And as Rush, the pie-eyed piper played, the brats and rats followed close behind unaware that they would ever see their homes or beloved treasures again. King George had made certain of that.

    February 14, 2009 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
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