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. Dan

    Man, I *cannot* wait until this man is president.

    October 31, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  2. vote! OBAMA-BIDEN NOV.4th


    October 31, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |

    All you're going to do is raise taxes and flush this country down the toilet.
    You're a liar and I pray everyday that you end up in Forest Lawn very soon.

    October 31, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |

    Obama tax plan ? From 250,000 to 200,000 Biden say 150,000 and now the New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson say 120,000? and obama is not in power yet . Wen he does don’t know how low will it go? Maybe under 42,000. Well at least the people that don’t pay taxes are going to be happy. I will do my best to keep my taxes low .I will vote for McCain.

    October 31, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  5. ez

    Registered Republican "voted" Obama/Biden 08

    October 31, 2008 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  6. New Day

    Its weird having a presidential candidate that is smart.

    You know, having an intelligent president might just be crazy enough to work!!!!

    October 31, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |

    This is what is going to happens in the united states of obama. Reporters cast away , tv stations order to turn off, web pages remove. we might have only one tv channel the obama channel.? His past actions let me believe that this country is going to be turn to a socialist system against our will.

    October 31, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  8. Matt

    I hope he pushes for universal voter registration and uniform federal voting procedures...not to mention campaign finance reform. Our democracy is broken primarily because the systems required to make it work are broken.

    October 31, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  9. Molly

    HAPPY HALLOWEEN – We have a big SURPRISE for the obama gang – we're called the 18 MILLION Hillary supporters – we did NOT unite, support and will NOT vote for obama. We have been quietly watching & waiting for our turn – and the day is near.

    VOTE Smart: McCain/Palin – we can TRUST them

    October 31, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  10. R Kid Mute

    A man who is obviously ready to lead!!! A man equal to the challenge!!! A man who plans ahead!!! The right guy for America in the 21st Century!!!


    October 31, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  11. John. Austin, TX

    Can't wait to celebrate his victory Tuesday night. I predict an early landslide victory- they'll definitely call it before midnight!!

    October 31, 2008 03:56 pm at 3:56 pm |
  12. Karen - Missouri

    I have all my fingers and toes crossed and pray every day that Obama and Biden are victorious on Nov. 4 to take this country forward! I have every trust in Obama to know the right priorities and who has gathered the best teams of advisers to date!

    October 31, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  13. Anit-Obama American

    You know he's got to "Pimp Out" the Presidential Limo

    October 31, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  14. GA voter

    This is one of the most common questioned asked in US presidential politics, but I personally don't like this question at all. Because:

    1. You cannot get anything but a politican answer – even though Obama did a much better job than most others would have done because he answered the question by bringing up new issues and generalizing it to connect them together.

    2. The question is simply not fair to anyone running for office because if the candindate says that s/he would like to do all of the above, then it looks like s/he is not answering the question. If they pick one or the other, then they lose also with people who thought that the other issues should be his/her priorities.

    Let's retire this question. Great job though Sen. Obama...

    October 31, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  15. Steve in Las Vegas,NV

    He will need to work on the economy and to help people who will or have faced foreclosure. Ensure how the bailout will help the people who need it and NOT the CEO's.

    He will surround himself with some of the best minds around for counsel and guidance, and be sucessful. This will take some time, but in the end it will be ok.

    October 31, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  16. Salsaluver

    it's the economy stupid, as Barack has stated.

    Take that Mc-Insane

    October 31, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  17. Indiana Joe

    Totally agree... Very smart guy..! For GOOD JUDGMENT AND EXPERIENCE VOTE OBAMA/BIDEN '08!!!

    October 31, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  18. dave harlow

    Im going to do this.. im going to do that......Tell us how you are going to do anything without raising taxes. I am sick and tired of both guys.

    but this guy is just an actor , nothing more.

    October 31, 2008 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  19. Greed is not good

    Outstanding...Yes I agree with his take. Economy has to be the #1 focus with energy independence a close second.

    October 31, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  20. SICKandTIRED!

    It looks like Obama got his prioties straight!!!!!!!

    October 31, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  21. KC


    October 31, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  22. Laverne

    It is time for Americans to come together and get this country back on track, Repubs, Dems, Ind. alike. One Nation Under God............!

    October 31, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  23. Veterans 4 Obama

    I just donated again!!! This election Barack's!!!

    October 31, 2008 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  24. Bitter in Texas

    Lawdy!!!!! A THINKING President....I don't know if I can get use to that after having the village idiot for 8 years. Ya'all get out there and vote..Ya Hear!

    October 31, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  25. AmericadowntheDrainMcCain

    Truly presidential. Really up to the task. Always looking forward and setting great goals for the American people. Obama – best man for the job.

    Obama/Biden 08.

    October 31, 2008 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22