September 20th, 2010
04:43 PM ET
12 years ago

Obama defends economic record

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption ="President Obama said Monday that his economic policies helped prevent a depression."]

New York ( - President Obama said Monday that his economic policies helped prevent a depression, although he acknowledged that many Americans are still struggling.

In a town hall meeting sponsored by the CNBC cable network, Obama responded to questions from unemployed workers, recent college graduates, small business owners and one prominent hedge fund manager. He sought to reassure middle class families that the American dream is still attainable, while at the same time rebutting criticism that he is anti-business.

The meeting came on the same day that the National Bureau of Economic Research said the Great Recession, which began in December 2007, officially ended in June 2009.

However, economists are debating whether the U.S. economy is headed for another downturn, a so-called double-dip recession.

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Filed under: Economy • issues • President Obama
soundoff (71 Responses)
  1. Angy

    President Obama took office Jan 2008. This country was a mess. you wingnuts gave that nut job bush 8 yrs to destroy this country and you expect President Obama to clean up this mess in 2 yrs. Give me a break. you are scared to actually this him a REAL chance because he will actually fix the mess.

    September 20, 2010 06:32 pm at 6:32 pm |
  2. JES

    What planet are you on.

    You are still out of touch with the voters and people who don't have jobs.

    How long do you think you can still sell you dumb ideas of spending money that doesnt create anything but government jobs.

    You must really think we are stupid out here.

    September 20, 2010 06:34 pm at 6:34 pm |
  3. Carrotroot

    I think the President is doing a great job ... however I am absolutely angry at 4 Democrats in the Senate – Ben Nelson, Mary Lieandru, Joe Liberman, and Blanche Lincoln. The action of these four Senators cost the Democrats credibility with voters when they literally hijacked the health care bill in-order to get special concessions for their individual states. Sure the GOP obstructed the process, but these four clowns did was far worse.

    September 20, 2010 06:35 pm at 6:35 pm |
  4. roro

    President Obama, without the use of prompters, gave thoughtful, intelligent, easily understood answers to every question. And he actually answered the questions, unlike many politicians who are so adept at non-answers. Bravo, Mr. President. Keep up the good work. That "hopey changey" thing is really working.

    September 20, 2010 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  5. JonDie

    Compared to the Great Recession caused by Bush, today we're living the gravy train. However, the Tea Party would like to cause so much chaos and anarchy that in desperation Americans vote to change from a democratically-elected government to a private corporate government with someone like Tony Hayward of BP as president.

    September 20, 2010 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  6. S in California

    Go Mr. President!

    750,000 JOBS WERE LOST EACH MONTH WHEN Bush WAS IN OFFICE. Keep that in mind when you go to the polls. Our president IS on the right track and America has stopped hemorrhaging and is now on the way to recovery.

    September 20, 2010 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  7. lil

    That's right you guy stay home on Nov 2 dont vote. Over 65ers stay home
    dont vote. Black people stay home dont vote. College students stay home
    dont vote. Veterans stay home dont vote. People with preexisting conditions stay home dont vote. Disabled Americans stay home dont vote.
    Stay home watch the republicans win and watch all these thing disappear with in 6 month. Because paul ryan cant wait to change social security. Pence cant wait defund healthcare. Black people no more voters rights act. simpkins already started talk about cutting veterans benifits. college students your pell grant and student loans are by,by.

    So please stay home and give republicans the house and senate
    by the way 99er you sure want get any unemployment republicans think you are lazy.

    September 20, 2010 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  8. The incompetent Barrack Hussein Obama


    OBOZO really thinks he has an economic record to stand on. Yes, he and the DNC have blamed bush, but let's go back to 2007 when the DUMocRATS took control of CONGRESS.

    Then along comes OBOZO with his SOCIALIST agenda, and it has failed, and he keeps pleading for us to take this "wait and see" attitude. Let us know forget how many hiddenx taxes kick in during the next few years due to the infmaous OBOZOCARE Healthcare (really a Tax) Bill.

    So, OBOZO has
    *Tripled the Deficit (while also increasing taxes and fees)
    *Higher unemployment
    *Increased Fed GOVT spending by over 20%
    *Higher Taxes

    Yeah, he has an economic record to stand on. Ha Ha Ha,

    What idiot (other than the Kenya Village Idiot in the WH) believe this?

    September 20, 2010 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  9. The Tea Party is another Koch Brothers Product

    Thank you President Obama,your doing a fine job considering the mess that was left from the drunken bingers.

    September 20, 2010 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  10. USA 1

    From budget surplus, to recession, over an 8 year period. Massive unfunded tax cuts, two wars paid for off the books, repeal of Wall Street regulations, the loss of millions of middle class jobs, & runaway greed from the top 2% (whose income has jumped 256% over the last 30 years)...

    And we expect the President to fix it all in only 21 months...especially while having to deal with the "Just say NO!" party.

    Impossible! We're lucky we didn't go off a cliff and into a depression. It is going to take almost as long to climb out of the hole we are in, especially if the GOP regains power.

    September 20, 2010 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  11. Haren

    Republican argument As they say when you are robbing peter to pay Paul.
    But now don't you think it is Peter's time after he was robbed by paul for last 20 years in republican presidency.

    September 20, 2010 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  12. David

    Agreed, President has done well both in avoiding a great depression as well as setting a more solid foundation for the future, all this with the GOP not at the table and instead being anti-american by feeding off the fears of the weak and desperate and and manipulating the media. Obama has also kept the public far safer than did Bush and the GOP. Obama now do something dramatic to win back the younger voters – real energy policy that aims for 100% reliance on domestic, clean energy within 20 years with intermediate goals, even if this caused a temporary bump in the deficit keeping this wealth in the US rather than sending the wealth overseas will obviously pay off in the long run.

    September 20, 2010 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  13. CERR

    We are still waiting for Tea Partiers to take the stage and answer questions from the General Public and The Media like THE PRESIDENT does frequently. PALIN, ANGLE, O DONNELL, MILLER, RAND, and BACHMAN only allow prearranged questions, because they cannot answer critical questions. They are not THINKERS. They dodge the real public and News Media.

    September 20, 2010 07:13 pm at 7:13 pm |
  14. Julian E -True American in Arizona

    Oh no! this news cuts the wind out of the lungs of the Marxist and Socialist screamers. it also comes at a wrong time and from the wrong mouth piece (a body with world wide credibility in economic matters) to show that this administration, and especially OBAMA, has not been so wrong and liberal as assumed by many in terms of the economic policies so far implemented.

    What this means to anti-OBAMA is that when you vote radicals (people like GWB and now Sarah Palin et. al), those who scream "we taking our America back..." (back into stone ages) with no real brains of solving the complex issues of this age, you get nothing but a mess to clean up long after they are gone.

    September 20, 2010 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  15. lil

    Someone needs to explain that it was george w bush who first started the
    stimulus and Obama wasn't in office until January 20,2009. January was the 1st month we lost well over 700,000 jobs and 700,000 or more jobs a month for at least 4 month. You see President Obama has only been in office for less than 2 years. bush and the ones you are about to vote back in caused these problems and you all listen to the republicans lies glen beck, hannady, rush. Democrats really have only been in power for 2 years.
    The first 2 was controlled by bushes veto pen.

    September 20, 2010 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  16. jim

    Obama has forgotten why he was elected. Instead of fixing the economy he has spent his days trying to change this country into "a socialist utopia"How much has the unemployment rate dropped since he was elected.?The poverty rate hit 14.3%in 2009 under his leadership.And economist say the recession ended in June of last year. So exactly what do we have for all that stimus spending other than new debt to be passed to our children.

    September 20, 2010 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  17. GuyinVA

    I'm not so sure that "it could have been worse" is much of a defense.

    Man, Sniffit, you are one angry little person. Rather than quoting me and and going into a lengthy discussion of why "it actually would have been much worse", just give the short version of your usual drivel. How about a resounding "NUH-UH!" I know, I know. Save your breath. I'll just call myself a racist and save you the trouble.

    September 20, 2010 07:23 pm at 7:23 pm |
  18. NotFooled

    Well done Mr. President. The town hall was such a refreshing change from the mindless chants and outright lies I've heard from the right. It'll take a while to reverse 30 years of bad economic policies – but we're heading in the right direction. I have much more faith in the democrats to deliver for the working class – they've already done a great deal, but there's more to be done. The working class isn't even a blip on the republicans radar – they're too busy working for the corporations and the wealthy.

    When was the last time you heard a republican talk seriously about the working class – their predicament – and what they'd do to improve the situation? What exactly has the republican party done for the working class in the last 30 years? Oh, I should qualify that – what GOOD has the republican party done for the working class? They've certainly done a lot of damage, but nothing that I'd consider positive.

    The choice is clear this election.

    September 20, 2010 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  19. Steve in North Carolina

    I watched the town hall and overall Obama handled himself pretty well because he is a gifted speaker. Even though the questioners were hand picked, he was put on the defensive by some of his own supporters who are frustrated by the state of the economy.

    Being a gifted speaker is not enough. At the end of the day when the illusion of words wear off and you still don't have a job as the government spends our country into oblivion with no results, it is no wonder that many are questioning what is going on. Excuses, trying to pass the blame and calling people racist who don't agree with what is going on isn't going to fix anything.

    September 20, 2010 07:30 pm at 7:30 pm |
  20. hal

    The recession is over? I didn't know that- you could have fooled me! Are we suppose to go along with this?! Yeah!!

    September 20, 2010 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  21. Right Leaning Independent

    Only Obama and his kool aid drinking followers could believe he is pro business.. He has villified nearly every industry other than the "green" industry and companies have countered by not hiring to get him and his sorry Dem friends fired!! So rather than firing up his base he has greatly helped facilitate the demise of the Democrat party!!!

    September 20, 2010 07:56 pm at 7:56 pm |
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