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Saturday, November 8, 2008

Obama Holds First Press Conference

George Wenschhof

Yesterday from Chicago, the President-elect addressed the nation and he fared well. Behind him, where he spoke from a podium, were his economic advisers and his chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel was at his side. He spoke of the need for a rescue plan for the middle class that would provide jobs and relief. He recognized the global aspects of the economic crisis and how we needed to stop the spread calling for a stimulus plan now.

If President Bush did not act on a stimulus program, it would be the first thing he would introduce after being sworn in as president. Obama also spoke of reviewing the current bail out plan to ensure it was doing as intended and said the Treasury should work with the FDIC, HUD, and other government agencies.

Obama then moved to his promised long term plans pertaining to clean energy, affordable health care, education reform and tax relief for the middle class.

Interestingly, since the economic crisis hit wall street, every time President Bush addressed the nation, the Dow dropped - after Obama's press conference the Dow gained 248.02 to close at 8943.81.

He took about ten questions from the press, which ranged from what type of dog he and Michelle were going to get for their daughters to how he intends to deal with Iran. He answered he had spoken to former Presidents Bush, Carter and Clinton and make a slight joke reference as to how he was not going to be holding any seances, as Nancy Reagan was rumored to have done. Later, in a wise move, he called the former First Lady to apologize for his remarks. Another moment of levity was when he referred to himself as a mutt when he was explaining what type of dog they were looking for. He had hoped for a shelter dog, but one daughter had allergies and it was unlikely a shelter dog would work.

Overall, in his first press conference, Obama came across as serious and Presidential who also offered glimpses of humor. Inauguration Day is January 20, 2009, 73 days from today.


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