Obama takes on ‘devastation’ of recession
In State of the Union, president calls for three-year spending freeze
'I never suggested change would be easy'
Jan. 27: President Barack Obama calls for a stronger, non-partisan effort to solve the nation's problems in his first State of the Union address.
By Alex Johnson
updated 8:32 p.m. PT, Wed., Jan. 27, 2010
Declaring that “I do not accept second place for the United States of America,” President Barack Obama compared the economic crisis to the greatest challenges of the nation’s past Wednesday night, saying “history’s call” demanded a years-long freeze on huge chunks of popular government spending programs.
In his first State of the Union address, Obama bluntly compared the recession to great challenges of the past like the Civil War and the bloody struggle for civil rights in the 1960s. While there has been progress, it has stalled, he said, telling lawmakers in the House chamber and millions of Americans at home that “the devastation remains.”
“I take my share of the blame for not explaining it more clearly to the American people,” Obama said. “... This problem is not going away.”