Obama Pushes Economic Plan

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THE WHITE HOUSE - The president morphed from commander-in-chief to salesman-in-chief Tuesday night, pushing an economic plan that he says will turn the country's fortunes around -- eventually.

"We will recover from this recession," Obama told the reporters present and a live television audience of millions. "But it will take time, it will take patience."

Click the player to watch the report from CBN News White House Correspondent David Brody followed by Pat Robertson's comments and interview with Brody from The White House.

The president's budget is the number one area of scrutiny right now. Republicans are raising a fuss over it.

"I think this may be the most irresponsible legislation I've seen in my legislative career," said Rep. John Boehner House Minority Leader. "Your budget spends too much. It taxes too much and borrows too much from our kids and grandkids."

Democrats Want to Slash President's Budget

The problem for the president is moderate Democrats have problems with it, too. They see the budget leading to a huge deficit in the future, so they have already come up with ways to slash hundreds of billions of dollars from his $3.6 trillion budget.

They are looking at dropping a controversial cap and trade energy plan, scaling back on healthcare funding and nixing the idea to make a middle- class tax cut permanent.

The president signaled a bend, but not break strategy saying long term investments are key.

"Let's do a whole host of things, some of which cost money on the front end, but offer the prospect of reducing costs on the back end," Obama said.

As for controversy, the only thing that came close was a question about the president's support for embryonic stem cell research. He was asked about ignoring other options.

"I am glad to see progress is being made in adult stem cells," Obama responded. "And if the science determines that we can completely avoid a set of ethical questions or political disputes, then that's great. I have no investment in causing controversy."

President Shows Rare Glimpse of Anger

Speaking of controversy, on the American International Group bonuses fallout, the president got a little testy when CNN pressed on why he waited days to seem outraged over the bonuses.

"But on AIG, why did you wait?," CNN White House Correspondent Ed Henry asked the president. "Why did you wait days to come out and express that outrage? It seems like the action is coming out of New York and the attorney general's office. It took you days to come to the public with Secretary Geithner and say, 'Look, we're outraged.' Why did it take so long?"

"It took us a couple of days, because I like to know what I'm talking about before I speak," Obama replied sharply.

The president is walking a financial tightrope by trying to balance outrage at greedy investors with the fact that he needs those same investors to help pitch in with the government to bail out fragile banks, so credit can start flowing again.

"I'm as angry as anybody about those bonuses that went to some of the very same individuals who brought our financial system to its knees," Obama said. "At the same time, the rest of us can't afford to demonize every investor or entrepreneur who seeks to make a profit."

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CBN News
David Brody

David Brody

CBN News White House Correspondent

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