Obama, Bernanke Agree Economy Rebounding

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WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama said Tuesday that the economy is on the rebound and credited the stimulus package for helping turn things around.

Comments from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke helped support Obama's claims.  Bernanke said the "recession is very likely over at this point," but also warned that the economy is still not efficient enough to prevent unemployment.

Monday, Obama urged Congress to put new rules in place to prevent a future financial cricis from happening.

"I feel quite confident that a comprehensive reform will be forthcoming," Bernanke assured.

Still, Americans are questioning the president's handling of the economy, especially the enormous federal deficit.

It's a bit of a mixed message -- with a growing number of people joining the ranks of the unemployed, confidence in the president's handling of the economy is slipping.

On Tuesday, President Obama was on the road, trying to assure Americans that his administration has a plan for recovery -- and that it's working.

His message comes a day after he told Wall Street what's in store on the one-year anniversary of the collapse of Lehman Brothers, which caused a near financial meltdown.

"Hear my words: We will not go back to the days of reckless behavior and unchecked excess at the heart of this crisis, where too many were motivated only by the appetite for quick kills and bloated bonuses," Obama told Wall Street on Monday.

The White House is trying to make the case that the financial picture has improved.

Hundreds of billions of dollars have gone toward rescuing banks, car companies, and stimulating the economy with construction projects and programs like "Cash-for-Clunkers."

The temporary trade-in plan is credited for General Motors' decision rehire a thousand workers at a Chevy plant near Youngstown, Ohio, where the president will hold a roundtable and tell his audience that his plan is putting Americans back to work.

"The work of recovery continues. And though I will never be satisfied while people are out of work and our financial system is weakened, we can be confident that the storms of the past two years are beginning to break," Obama said.

With unemployment hovering around 10 percent - about 15 million people out of work - Americans are concerned not enough is being done to avoid another meltdown or to turn the economy around.

A new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows 51 percent approve of the way the president is dealing with the economy, and far fewer, only 39 percent, think he's doing a good job handling the federal deficit.

Poll numbers that suggest the president has a lot of work to do selling Americans on his message.

 

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