“President Barack Obama addressed a joint session of Congress for the first time since taking office last month. I am humbled by President Obama’s honest assessment of the state of our nation and equally inspired by his ‘blueprint for our future.’
Yesterday, I participated in President Obama’s White House Fiscal Summit, which brought together select members of Congress, economists, unions, business leaders, lawmakers, and advocacy groups to discuss the most pressing issues currently facing our country, including the current economic crisis, health care, and Social Security. This meeting was a precursor to tonight’s speech, and a constructive first step toward breaking out of the economic tailspin that we have been engulfed in for far too long.
New Yorkers need solutions, and they need them now. Tonight, President Obama proposed several policy measures that will help improve the financial stability of our markets, help keep families in their homes, implement reforms to eliminate waste, fraud, and abuse in government spending, reduce healthcare costs, cultivate our economy with clean renewable energy, and modernize our educational systems so that we can foster innovation and remain viable in the global economy.
The President talked openly about the ‘stark reality of what we’ve inherited – a trillion dollar deficit, a financial crisis, and a costly recession.’ In New York, the rate of unemployment and foreclosures has reached record highs– all remnants of Wall Street’s collapse and a severe economic downturn. People are wondering where they will get their next meal, how they will pay their rent, and who they will turn to for help. That is why I supported the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that President Obama signed into law last week, which is estimated to create 3.5 million jobs nationwide and 215,000 jobs in New York. I am also working to advance the Helping Families Save Their Homes Act, set for consideration on the House floor this week, that would help millions of families avoid foreclosures.
A new day is here, and in the words of our President, ‘that day of reckoning has arrived.’ We have a lot of work to do. I join President Obama in believing that if we work together our nation can restore the American promise.
“For all of the TySheoma Bethea’s in communities all across America, we are not quitters.”