When President Obama addressed a joint session of Congress for the first time, he confronted head on the serious economic challenges our nation faces. He called for a new era of responsibility and cooperation and asked Congress to look beyond short term political calculations and to make vital investments in health care, energy, and education. I agree with the President that his plans will make America stronger and more prosperous well into the future. A little more than a month into his Administration, this President has already taken bold steps to address our nation’s urgent economic problems. Through the Recovery Act, the Stability Plan, and the Housing Plan, the Administration is taking the immediate necessary measures to halt our economic downturn. The measures will provide much-needed assistance to working people and their families. I totally agree with President Obama when he says to set our country on a new course of stability and prosperity, our elected leaders must reject the old ways of doing business in Washington. Clearly, we can no longer tolerate fiscal deficits and runaway spending while deferring the consequences to future generations. The President pledged to cut our government’s deficit in half by the end of his first term. He is correct that to achieve that goal will require all of us making sacrifices and hard decisions. It will also require an honest budgeting process that is straight with taxpayers about where their dollars are going. It’s sort of weird to see Republicans in Congress taking about fiscal responsibility when you consider it was during the Bush years when our economic meltdown occurred. Those folks need to forget politics and support our President. Central to the recovery plan will be a “renewed commitment to honesty and transparency in government.” Restoring our country’s economic health will only happen when ordinary citizens are given the opportunity to hold their representatives fully accountable for the decisions they make. This President is committed to that goal. I support him fully and encourage all Americans to do the same. We must all not only support the President, but continuously pray for him and all members of his Administration as well as all members of Congress.
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