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Obama Attacks Stimulus Critics

Nancy Pelosi and President Obama share a dinner table at the House Democratic Issues Conference in Williamsburg, Va, Feb. 5. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

By Perry Bacon Jr.
WILLIAMSBURG, Va. -- President Obama sharply attacked critics of his proposed economic stimulus in a speech in front of House Democrats tonight, using his first trip outside of Washington as president to reshape public perception of a bill that has been assailed by Republicans and even some Democrats.

"You get the argument, well, 'this is not a stimulus bill, it's a spending bill," Obama said, repeating GOP criticisms of the bill. "What do you think a stimulus is? That's the whole point.... No seriously, that's the point."

He turned to two of his favorite tactics used during his presidential campaign, blasting the record of George W. Bush and criticizing the "the cable chatter" and "distractions" that he feels bog down Washington.

"We're not going to get relief by turning back to the very same policies that in eight short years doubled the national debt and threw our economy into a tailspin," Obama said to cheers. "We can't embrace the losing formula that offers more tax cuts as the only answer to every problem we face."

While acknowledging there are legitimate criticisms of the proposal, he said "But I urge all of us not to make perfect the enemy of the absolutely necessary."

In private sessions with Republicans, Obama has suggested he does not agree with every provision Congress has put into the stimulus, but he praised House leaders here, specifically naming not only House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), but David Obey (D-Wisc.), the chairman of the House Appropriations Committee which wrote much of the stimulus package.

The three-day retreat in Willamsburg is a tradition for Democrats, but the first with the new president. Obama led the crowd in shouts of "Fired up, ready to go" after his speech, repeating a chant from his campaign rallies.

More than 200 Democratic House members came to the retreat. Many brought their spouses who were eager to take pictures not only with the new president, but also his press secretary Robert Gibbs.

Before he arrived, Obama took his first flights on Marine One, the helicopter that takes the president from the White House to Andrews Air Base and Air Force One, on which he took the 31-minute flight from Andrews to the airport in Newport News.

He greeted reporters before the flight on Air Force One took off, wearing a blue jacket with the words Air Force One stitched in cursive on the right side and "Barack Obama" on the left.

"I've got my spiffy jacket so I thought I'd come and show it off," he told reporters. "It's good to see you guys. What do you think of this spiffy ride? It's not bad."

He added, "The helicopter was very smooth, very impressive, you got right over the Washington Monument and then, you know, kind of curves in by the Capitol. It was spectacular."

By Patricia E. Gaston  |  February 5, 2009; 10:39 PM ET
Categories:  Barack Obama , Economy  
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Obama Presidency though in its infancy is doing its utmost to clean the massive mess which is not its doing, but left behind by its predecessors. The mess includes the Greatest Economic Famine ever witnessed by this planet, which has rained wreaked havoc of unspeakable difficulties and miseries not only for USA, but the rest of world as well.

The democrats have come up with a Stimulus Package of incentives to overwhelm this economic crises, which has already cost the American people millions of jobs and the resultant ramifications. In this moment of grave national emergency, the attitude of the Republicans, who connived to let it happen or led it to happen, is quite ununderstandable as they are obstructing it by playing peacetime politics with the Stimulus Package issue.

This inane attitude of the Republicans is being viewed as a measure to measure their methods and mindsets. They desperately need to recognize the fact in spirit that they have been rihtly relegated to a Minority party and consequently lost the occupancy of the White House, with the cool and considered verdict of the American nation in November last year in the shape of their heavy mandate to the Democrats to reign and run all their affairs - in USA and beyond its borders all over the planet - as the deem fit.

There is a unique global gesture and wave of rare and concrete confidence and cooperation for the Obama Presidency courtesy his charismatic popularity, which if cultivated in spirit can work wonders not only for USA, but the entire world.

Posted by: abdulqayyumkhan1950 | February 8, 2009 11:52 AM | Report abuse

The reason republicans ignore education and call money for it wasteful: They want uneducated lockstep republicans to blindly vote for any nonsense they dish out. Notice how the schools crumble and tuition gets unreachable they have more joe the plumber idiots out there? The guy that thinks he really is something. Not a Journeyman. No certificate. Works alongside low wage illegals no doubt. Puts out some real quality work. Doesn't have two nickels to rub together but tells us he is going to start a small business, right. But by God he is a repukelican. Then McSame & Pain hold him up as an example. Run them out of Washington.

Posted by: sesit | February 6, 2009 8:54 PM | Report abuse

so therefore, take your pick.....

1. the political doctrine of the former Federalist Party
2. Political system
A. a political system in which several states or regions defer some powers, e.g. in foreign affairs, to a central government while retaining a limited measure of self-government
2. principle of federal political system
A. the principle of a federal system of government
3. support for federal political system

1. US political party
A. a former political party of the United States advocating a strong centralized government within the federal system. Founded in 1787, it declined in influence after 1800.

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | February 6, 2009 2:35 PM | Report abuse

oh please....
tell it to the 8500 families a day getting foreclosed upon.
For you socialists: go walkin' lightly in those Nazi boots ya' all!!!!
1. Political system of communal ownership
A. a political theory or system in which the means of production and distribution are controlled by the people and operated according to equity and fairness rather than market principles

2. movement base on socialism
A. a political movement based on principles of socialism, typically advocating an end to private property and to the exploitation of workers

3. stage between capitalism and communism
A. in Marxist theory, the stage after the proletarian revolution when a society is changing from capitalism to communism, marked by pay distributed according to work done rather than need

Socialist—the antonym is capitalist
you know antonyms dontcha? THE OPPOSITE.

Synonyms-collective, communist, communalist, collectivist, Marxist, Leninist. Maoist.

Posted by: TheBabeNemo | February 6, 2009 2:31 PM | Report abuse

The reason President Obama is pushing so hard for the so called stimulus bill to be completed in a hurry, is so Americans won't discover that it is actually nothing but a socialist plan.

I am not stupid Mr. President. I know what stimulus and spending mean. Stimulus in this case will not help unless it is short-term and actually helps the economy. I don't think you have even read the over six hundred pages of the plan. In fact, I'd be willing to bet that you have not, and only know about parts you have been told about.

What bothers me is that Americans (BOTH DEMOCRATS AND REPUBLICANS) are contacting their representatives and you, President Obama, by the millions, telling them to STOP THE MADNESS; stop the so called stimulus plan, but you, PRESIDENT OBAMA, AND OUR REPRESENTATIVES ARE NOT LISTENING. What in the world will it take?

The arguing between the Republicans and Democrats is a farce anyhow. What difference does it make if the "stimulus" plan is $800 billion or $900 billion? They are arguing about a few more teaspoons of water in the ocean. WE DON'T NEED THE STIMULUS PLAN AT ALL!

I know my concerns are not going to make a lick of difference. No one is listening to me, or other Americans who are contacting you.

So, I am just going to have to show all of you how I feel about your lack of disinterest in me at the next election.

I would like to make it clear that INCUMBENTS NEED NOT APPLY at the next election. I will not vote for anyone who is currently in office now. I am not the only one who is saying this, but our representatives are not listening to us.

Posted by: mollyclaire | February 6, 2009 1:28 PM | Report abuse

What? People didn't expect the Republicans to behave like children with an Oppositional Defiance Disorder?
Where have you people been for the last 8 years?

The Repuglicans have majored in denial, distraction and defiance over anything remotely Democratic for about 30 years now. Its sort of like Abby Hoffman's ,
"Revolution for the Hell of It", only its really, "Anti-Change for the Hell of It".

There is no reasoning with Repuglicans because they care more about their decrepit ideology than the good of the country and they always have. There are no principles involved with them. You would think that after getting blown out in two straight elections and having their party shrink down to the point where they are basically just a regional party (the South) that they would finally start acting reasonable...and you would think wrong. Reagan was a myth. Bush was a Nightmare on Wall Street and the battlefield.

You need any more proof?

Posted by: DrainYou | February 6, 2009 1:27 AM | Report abuse





The Bush-Cheney "multi-agency action" extrajudicial vigilante network and its related unconstitutional array of "programs of personal destruction" remain in place.

President Obama may not even be aware of some of the deeply entrenched "ops" that threaten his presidency...

... The "multi-agency action" nationwide army of "community stalking" citizen vigilantes hiding behind federally-funded volunteer organizations;

... the deployment of radiation weaponry to police departments nationwide;

... and the multi-agency unconstitutional programs -- ranging from pervasive spying to a parallel system of transaction processing that amounts to fascistic theft by deception -- must be taken down.

Immediately. Before more damage is done.

Before another "generated crisis" claims the renewed American spirit and again plunges the nation into despair and submission to "the dark side."

The agencies of government that are covertly commandeering this devolution of American democracy -- via their draconian "multi-agency action" programs -- must be reined in and reformed, top to bottom, never again to subvert the rule of law.


Posted by: scrivener50 | February 6, 2009 12:49 AM | Report abuse

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