Obama to link Wall Street to Main Street
Posted: Wednesday, April 28, 2010 8:02 pm
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — President Barack Obama’s message is simple: If lawmakers don’t rein in Wall Street, there’s no guarantee another economic crisis won’t undermine Main Street.
Making that link as he sells the Democrats’ financial regulatory reform bill is a political imperative for Obama as well as an economic one. He’s not on the ballot this fall, but his fellow Democrats face a tough political landscape brought on in part by the public’s wariness of his handling of the economy.
On the issue of financial regulations, Obama and Democratic lawmakers see an opportunity to paint Republicans as obstructionists who stand on the side of Wall Street bankers, not middle-class America.
On the first day of a three-state economic tour through the Midwest, he ripped Senate Republicans for blocking debate on a bill that would impose greater federal control on the nation’s financial system.
“It’s one thing to oppose reform, but to oppose just even talking about reform in front of the American people and having a legitimate debate, that’s not right,” Obama said Tuesday in Ottumwa, Iowa. “The American people deserve an honest debate on this bill.”
During stops in Missouri and Illinois today, Obama was expected to continue his efforts to frame his administration’s agenda — from the $862 billion recovery act to the massive health care overhaul — as part of his plan to put the economy on a path toward a more sustainable future.
The latest economic forecasts do show some signs of progress: The nation added jobs at the fastest pace in three years last month, the manufacturing industry is growing at a steady pace and new claims for jobless benefits have declined.
But 15 million Americans remain out of work, and most economic forecasts suggest it could be months or even years before the nation’s unemployment rate returns to more normal levels.
Published in The Messenger 4.28.10