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

Obama's top priorities for '09

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/31/art.obama.blitzer.cnn.jpg caption="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. Tom in Delaware

    You just better learn how to say something other than "present' after you're rejected by the American people and returned to the Senate.

    October 31, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  2. David

    This is a good start Mr. President.

    You at least are telling us why we should vote for you whereas McCain is telling us not to vote for you but gives us no good reason to vote for him except in implying that the presidency is owed to him because of his family line and the suffering he endured in Vietnam.

    Mr. President, you give me a reason to be hopeful, you give me a reason to knock at my neighbors door to ensure that they are doing okay, you inspire me to pick someone up when they are down, you instill in me the desire to put my country first and work with you to rebuild the American Dream, you are a leader that I will look up to because you will lead by example. You will not ask us to do anything that you are not willing to do yourself.

    I will look beyond the hatred, greed, and anger of the Republican team and look out for my fellow countrymen and vote for you.

    Jesus, led by example and asks us to be more like him, who do you think is putting Jesus' words into action? Obama or McCain, Biden or Palin?

    I'm voting for Obama/Biden!

    October 31, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  3. Glenn in California

    Great job, President-soon-to-be-elect Obama.

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

    Mike, I feel BHO has shown the World he is a strong and decisive person and will have more respect than GB ever had. I agree with "Is it the 5th yet" "....it will be a new era of better government and peace!

    October 31, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  5. MD, TX

    The first stimulus of $300B didn't do anything to help the economy.

    Why do they think another stimulus package will work when the first did not?

    October 31, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  6. Independent for McCain/Palin

    A Liberal is a person who will give away everything they don't own.

    My vote goes to the experienced candidate: Senator McCain.

    Webster's dictionary defines BO followers as a group of low-esteem, mean-spirited, hateful, empty-headed people easily led by an unqualified, arrogant, radical elitist!

    October 31, 2008 04:17 pm at 4:17 pm |
  7. vinod

    You are the man, go Obama

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  8. zepat

    I love that man. . . he is going to make Colbert's "Great or Greatest " question hard!

    WV for Obama/Biden 08/12

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  9. Zman


    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  10. McCain/Palin

    Obama has zero executive experience, zero business experience, zero management experience, zero financial expertise. His strategy for establishing financial stability is to get cronies to implement policies which we know will NEVER work. Get a grip, people, it's talk, talk, talk.

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  11. New Day

    Mike – newsflash!!!! You are going to die one day, any way!!!! Stop being a poop-in-ur-pants republican, will ya? We would still be a british colony if our founding fathers were scared of their own shadows, like most republicans are.

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  12. Noemi in Los Angeles

    Nov. 4th: Can't wait!

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  13. It is almost over!

    I cannot wait to see Tom Brokaw lift Tim Russert's beer mug to toast the new President.

    The world is about to change for the better. I hope Obama can hold his course and not be mired down in the politics of the past. There are a lot folks pretty deeply invested in the politics of the old. This fight will continue well beyond Tuesday. Everyone needs to stay focused and engaged for the next few years so that the new politics can take hold. Think of it as giving birth to your first child. You will need to care and nourish it for many years before it can take care of itself.

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  14. mume

    Ma. Man Barack Obama I can't wait to vote on da 4th

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  15. theo

    Thumps up! You are the man.
    What about Macsame= I know how to do it. I have been tested!!!!!
    You know how to do what ? Tell us MacBush!

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  16. Joe

    Dems have done absolutely nothing regarding 1] energy since taking over control of house and Senate. 2]Re-distribute wealth so the so called rich will terminate employees to offset their increased taxes. 3]Socialized medicine so utilization goes up and quality goes down. 4]Continue to allow anarchy on our southern border with no illegal immigration policy. 5] I'm sure his buddy William Ayers will be his Education secretary and he will restructure the system. Just what this country doesnt need another Jimmy Carter!!!

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  17. dave harlow

    Did you all read what he said.....he said nothing more than what you want to hear... he does not talk at all on how he plans to do anything....These are just words folks, well writen, very spoken words with nothing behind it.......

    We are in big trouble folks

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  18. proud american

    you will be an awesome President

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  19. Angel Rodriguez

    I think this is special and history WILL be made!

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  20. michael

    hey mike from this blog. keeping us safe is a no brainer. if we do not have an economy that works we will not be safe on many levels. use your brain not some infantile emotional reaction.

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  21. SAM/VA

    He clearly has agenda on what he's going to do first day in the Oval office. That is very level headed thinking unlike McCain who reacts on an impulse and is very erratic.

    Change I Can Believe In!

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  22. Adam

    3 more days, you are IN

    October 31, 2008 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  23. vw

    I am wondering how many people will trust what he said.

    You know, there is no single evidence to prove he is able to do just 1% of what he promised. He just fooled the american people by giving them a day-dream......

    October 31, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  24. Reaaly?

    Mike: Yup exactly...and how are you going to protect yourself now? Where are you going to get the moolah for everything you need to protect yourself? Use your brians people..you lose the economy, you're out on the street, no security and no protection from anything! Economy is number 1 on the list! Borrowing from every Tom, Dick or Harry is not going to help you...especially if that Tom, Dick or Harry is not your friend in the first place!

    October 31, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
  25. turn az blue

    mike, we are pretty much safe. It's called the military

    October 31, 2008 04:19 pm at 4:19 pm |
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