February 14th, 2009
11:34 AM ET
2 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. Rachel

    To supporters of the GOP who are against the stimulus bill, supply-side economics simply and plainly DOES NOT WORK. Before you call democrats and independents "scum" who want the country to fall apart, you might want to read the history of your own party and all the mistakes they have made. I doubt you even understand economics enough to make rational decisions about what is best for the majority of the country. You should educate yourself-and that does not mean listening to Rush Limbaugh. He is a radio personality, looking for ratings, period. People who listen and believe him or Hannity or the like are angry and delusional people because these men are uneducated, ignorant cons making money off your stupidity.

    February 14, 2009 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  2. nina

    Congrad on giving 265 million to the already corrupt welfare system!! How is this helping the economy? This is not going to change things. What's next.. give amesty to all illegals so that only the democrats have a say in this country...sure because that is what our forefathers wanted. a land where only the lazy survive. with no religion, a something for nothing nation! Thats the demacrats adgenda.

    February 14, 2009 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  3. Rachel

    rob, tax cuts have NOT worked every time they have been used. What are you basing that on? Why do you think we are in the state we are on now. Too many tax cuts, mostly for the rich and corporations and the Iraq war , a waste of money. SUPPLY SIDE ECONOMICS DO NOT WORK. If you don't know what that is read it. Tax cuts only help to a certain degree. They are not an answer-they never have been......

    February 14, 2009 03:38 pm at 3:38 pm |
  4. Rachel

    The comments on this topic and others on CNN clearly show that America needs to put more money into its education system. It is amazing how many Republicans call Democrats "stupid" and the other way around. The Republican party has always been the one to cut education and to not consider it important. Doesn't that tell you something? When I read the comments , it is clear that most GOP supporters are not educated on economics or history, yet they are full of hate and anger towards Obama and Democrats. It is really quite sad to see such anger misdirected by people who don't really understand the issues......

    February 14, 2009 03:42 pm at 3:42 pm |
  5. Charles

    So with the GOP whining about our children's children having to pay for this, where were they when the last administration continued an illegal war to the tune of $10 billion plus a MONTH. Our children's children will have to pay for that also, and it doesn't even do any good for our country. And now we have an intelligent president who believes in the laws of our country, and is trying to clean up the mess left from the previous eight years. Thank God we finally have a responsible leader who is willing to do whatever it takes to make America strong again.

    February 14, 2009 03:45 pm at 3:45 pm |
  6. dzung,tx.

    I was so sadden by the so call friscal conservatives,when Bush ask for money to spend they are more than happy to give it to him,like the 700 billions bail out for the banks with no regulation,and when Obama asked for 787 billions ecomomy stimulus package they crying too much goverment spending,of course the goverment need to spend the money to stimulus the economy,because all of their rich friends got the money from bush and hold onto it,they do not spend money to help the economy,so someone have to do it.

    February 14, 2009 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  7. johnrj08

    The tax cuts were put in for two reasons: first, because Obama's primary campaign promise was to cut taxes for 98% of country. Second, the tax cuts were put in the bill because the GOP demanded them. There would have been much more if they had gotten their way.

    February 14, 2009 03:48 pm at 3:48 pm |
  8. Shayne in NH

    At least we are getting things done! You republican retards sit around and complain, whine, and argue amongst yourselves. Drink your champagne or redneck Bud (repubs are at one extreme or the other) and shut the hell up.

    But wait, it gets better! You also offer no solutions! Get a brain, educate yourselves, use that education, and put it into practice.

    Retards.

    February 14, 2009 03:49 pm at 3:49 pm |
  9. Daniel, Atlanta, GA

    I just know that Republicans will reject anything.

    February 14, 2009 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  10. Rave

    To everyone posting negative comments on our President... you are Slaves. You deserve to be slaves and ruled over by corporations, government and ship your jobs to other countries (that's what happened in last 8 years, if I recollect properly)
    Also, your pensions, 401K's, Savings need to rounded off to a ZERO...then you will like the President. Because, that's what Mr. Monkey did in the last 8 years.
    So... continue to be the rotten kind you are now and spew negative, hate comments. You just have to watch this country become prosperous in the next 8 years under Mr. Obama.

    February 14, 2009 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  11. Proud American

    Do I really care about bipartisianship? NO!! Nothing has been done for so many years. I give the President and Congress credit for trying to help the people. Maybe we all should hope and pray that the President succeeds, because it means Americans succeed!!! People who are tryng so hard to tear the president down and hoping he fails, are failing themselves and failing America!!! Why do not some of you try to help someone who is in need and not just worry about yourself. It just might make you feel good!!!

    February 14, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  12. Just a Mom

    Sen. Murskowski...hhhmmm...she was named one of the most corrupt senators by CREW, (Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington), last year so, I think I'll ignore her.

    February 14, 2009 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  13. ib

    The liberals can't stand the hatred for Obama? What have the conservatives heard for the past 8 years but hate but wait now we are suppose to unite under King Obama. No one was given enough time to study this bill to know if it is good or bad. Obama says he wants to reach out to the Republicans– he does as long as they fall in line and vote for everything he wants. If this is an example of Change than he shove the change along with his late tax paying cabinet members.

    February 14, 2009 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  14. Otis Lee Morgan

    I think this is a really great thing. I am totally into it. I have always wondered what will happen to the poorest if the richest make thousands of mistakes and looses all that they have.

    It is really great to know that President Obama has made some provisions for the poor in this bill also. Now maybe they still have a chance to improve the quality of their lives through hard work and education.

    February 14, 2009 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  15. Matthew, Detroit

    I hope I am completely wrong. I hope Obama Succeeds.

    I hope we do not build bigger goverment. I hope we dont build bigger entitlements. I home more people get off welfare. I hope that he does not make our society socialistic. I hope that our economy responds and because of growth Barack is able to lower taxes for everyone who actually pays taxes.

    I hope the stimulus package some how magically works and the economy starts to turn. I hope we do not become like Russia and our people stand in line for bread and no one can afford a car.

    February 14, 2009 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  16. Joanna

    Obama did the 30% tax cuts to try and get some support from the GOP. Good try, they do not want to contribute, lets move along without them. Bush got us in this.. Obama is trying to get us out. If anyone destroy our country, it was bush.

    February 14, 2009 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  17. Matthew, Detroit

    Michigan is a great example of a state and failing ideas. Jennifer Granholm is a terrible Governor.

    Engler the former governor in 8 years, reduced welfare, reduced unemployment, reduced the amount of people on welfare, created jobs in order to receive welfare pay.

    Granholm has increased the number of welfare Recepients, has increased business taxes, increased welfare payments and BIG DRUM ROLL... Single Handedly chased,
    PFIZER, Volkswagen, Comerica Bank, and others out of the state in 6 years. She is an Economic spokesman for OBAMA. Great!!!

    February 14, 2009 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  18. Gary

    I guess I don't understand the congratulations. Not a single member of congress or staff had a chance to read this bill before voting. They could have put the vote off for 1 week and every congressperson and staff member could have reviewed it. This will not help the economy and it will put our children and grandchildren into debt. The only thing that this bill showed us is that after 8 years of Bush and GOP wasting our money on pet projects, Obama and Pelosi and the Democrats are wasting not time wasting even more money. This is not change, this is not leadership, this is pathetic.

    February 14, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  19. Nic Ledoux, Burlington VT

    A better analogy would have been "this is using your credit card after you lost your job to make payments until your up on your feet again"

    It might not be the best thing, but it will keep you going through tough times until you've got yourself situated.

    February 14, 2009 04:37 pm at 4:37 pm |
  20. RSB

    When did Republicans become fiscally responsible? I think their time in control speaks for itself. Their credibility is questionable. And why is anybody from Alaska complaining? Yeah, you didn't proceed with the bridge to nowhere (as Palin kept saying) but you kept the money issued for it. What did you do with it? Why wasn't spending an issue then?

    February 14, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  21. dg

    well government and thier ideas..thats what scares me..they got us into this mess..now they are going to get us out of this mess?...NOT

    February 14, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  22. Coherent1

    Congrats, Mr. President!
    To the Republican strongholds...unclench those fists!! LOL! How many times are you going to use the failed strategy that was so greatly exposed during the campaign. Nevertheless, Republicans, all is not lost unless you continue in 'stupidity mode'. Now, hold you heads up high because Mr. President says "get to work".

    February 14, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  23. catmom

    You Republicans are a bunch of whiny, sore, selfish losers that don't have a clue. You all have been whining about President Obama since the American people rejected the Republicans do the same thing we did for the past eight years mantra.
    DP, tired of paying taxes are you? Tired of having Police and Fire protection? Tired are you of having the Military protecting the country, schools for our children, a safety net for old people? I sure hope you never need any type of help.
    I get sick to death of listening to selfish people who only think about themselves. It's nice that things have worked out for you people but that doesn't mean that those who are facing difficulties right now aren't working just as hard as you. Yes some people made stupid decisions but that isn't everyone nor is it just poor people. Poor people work hard too. They are the ones who clean your house or office, take care of the elderly, serve your food, work in hospitals, countless of jobs that don't pay what it is worth, but someone has to do them. It is unfortunate that these jobs aren't worthy of decent pay or your respect but our country can't get along without them. These are hard working people and educated people like Social Workers, Teachers. Some people may not make enough to pay taxes but they are never the less working just as hard if not harder than those sitting behind a desk raking in the bucks doing minimal work .
    Until Republicans come up with something other than tax cuts or the same ideas of the past eight years just be quiet. You had your chance and this is the result.

    February 14, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  24. Chris

    K... Most people when they go to get a loan and don't have good credit cause they are in too much debt have to put something up for collateral. What EXACTLY did Obama and the Democratic party put up for collateral? From the size of this package they mostly likely put up the entire country. Thanks for selling us out guys.

    February 14, 2009 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  25. T in NV

    So what Republicans are saying is that if we give tax cuts then companies, small businesses & individuals will spend more money to stimulate the economy. BUT if the gov't spends money through this stimulus bill then it won't work? Spending is stimulus. Republicans are hypocrites & they are trying to make this country fail just so they can try to save their drowning party.

    February 14, 2009 05:20 pm at 5:20 pm |
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