Obama: Recovery path hard, challenge 'can be met'

President Barack Obama addresses the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

President Barack Obama addresses the Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C., on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2012. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

Charlie Crist speaks at DNC

He receives warm reception.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — His re-election in doubt, President Barack Obama conceded only halting progress Thursday night toward fixing the nation's stubborn economic woes, but vowed in a Democratic National Convention finale, "Our problems can be solved, our challenges can be met."

"Yes, our path is harder — but it leads to a better place," he declared in a prime-time speech to convention delegates and the nation, blending resolve about rescuing the nation from near economic catastrophe with stinging criticism of Republican rival Mitt Romney's own proposals.

Widely viewed as reserved, even aloof, Obama acknowledged "my own failings" as he asked for a second term, four years after taking office as the nation's first black president.

Citing progress toward recovery, he said, "After a decade that was defined by what we bought and borrowed, we're getting back to basics and doing what America has always done best: We're making things again."

"Four more years," delegates chanted over and over as the 51-year-old Obama stepped to the podium, noticeably grayer than he was as a history-making candidate for the White House in 2008.

First Lady Michelle Obama and the couple's daughters, Malia and Sasha, joined the president on stage in the moments after the speech, followed by other family members and Vice President Joe Biden and his wife. Strains of "Only in America" filled the hall as confetti filled the air.

Obama's speech was the final act of a pair of highly scripted national political conventions in as many weeks, and the opening salvo of a two-month drive toward Election Day that pits Obama against Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts. The contest is ever tighter for the White House in a dreary season of economic struggle for millions.

Biden preceded Obama at the convention podium and proclaimed, "America has turned the corner" after experiencing the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.

Obama didn't go that far in his own remarks, but he said firmly, "We are not going back, we are moving forward, America."

With unemployment at 8.3 percent, the president said the task of recovering from the economic disaster of 2008 is exceeded in American history only by the challenge Franklin Delano Roosevelt faced when he took office in 1933.

"It will require common effort, shared responsibility and the kind of bold persistent experimentation" that FDR employed, Obama said.

In an appeal to independent voters who might be considering a vote for Romney, he added that those who carry on Roosevelt's legacy "should remember that not every problem can be remedied with another government program or dictate from Washington.

He said, "The truth is, it will take more than a few years for us to solve challenges that have built up over the decades."

In the run-up to Obama's speech, delegates erupted in tumultuous cheers when former Arizona Rep. Gabrielle Giffords, grievously wounded in a 2011 assassination attempt, walked onstage to lead the Pledge of Allegiance. The hall grew louder when she blew kisses to the crowd.

And louder still when huge video screens inside the hall showed the face of Osama bin Laden, the terrorist mastermind killed in a daring raid on his Pakistani hideout by U.S. special operations forces â€" on a mission approved by the current commander in chief.

The hall was filled to capacity long before Obama stepped to the podium, and officials shut off the entrances because of a fear of overcrowding for a speech that the campaign had originally slated for the 74,000-seat football stadium nearby. Aides said weather concerns prompted the move to the convention arena, capacity 15,000 or so.

Obama's campaign said the president would ask the country to rally around a "real achievable plan that will create jobs, expand opportunity and ensure an economy built to last."

He added, "The truth is it will take more than a few years for us to solve challenges that have built up over a decade."

In convention parlance, both Obama and Biden were delivering acceptance speeches before delegates who nominated them for new terms in office.

But the political significance went far beyond that — the moment when the general election campaign begins in earnest even though Obama and Romney have been pointing toward a Nov. 6 showdown for months.

To the cheers of delegates, Obama retraced his steps to halt the economic slide, including the auto bailout that Romney opposed.

"After a decade of decline, this country created over a half million manufacturing jobs in the last two and a half years," he said.

Turning to national security, he said he had promised to end the war in Iraq, and had done so.

"We've blunted the Taliban's momentum in Afghanistan, and in 2014 our longest war will be over," he said.

"A new tower rises above the New York skyline, al-Qaida is on the path to defeat and Osama bin Laden is dead," he declared, one of the night's repeated references to the special operations forces raid that resulted in the terrorist mastermind's demise more than a year ago.

He lampooned Romney's own economic proposals.

"Have a surplus? Try a tax cut. Deficit too high? Try another. Feel a cold coming on? Take two tax cuts, roll back some regulations and call us in the morning," he said.

Mocking Romney for his overseas trip earlier this summer, Obama said, "You might not be ready for diplomacy with Beijing if you can't visit the Olympics without insulting our closest ally." That was a reference to a verbal gaffe the former Massachusetts governor committed while visiting London.

The hall was filled to capacity long before Obama stepped to the podium, and officials shut off the entrances because of a fear of overcrowding for a speech that the campaign had originally slated for the 74,000-seat football stadium nearby. Aides said weather concerns prompted the move to the convention arena, capacity 15,000 or so.

Obama's campaign said the president would ask the country to rally around a "real achievable plan that will create jobs, expand opportunity and ensure an economy built to last."

Biden told the convention in his own speech that he had watched as Obama "made one gutsy decision after another" to stop an economic free-fall after they took office in 2009.

Now, he said, "we're on a mission to move this nation forward â€" from doubt and downturn to promise and prosperity. ... America has turned the corner."

Delegates who packed into their convention hall were serenaded by singer James Taylor and rocked by R&B blues artist Mary J. Blige as they awaited Obama's speech.

There was no end to the jabs aimed at Romney and the Republicans.

"Ask Osama bin Laden if he's better off than four years ago," said Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry, who lost the 2004 election in a close contest with President George W. Bush. It was a mocking answer to the Republicans' repeated question of whether Americans are better off than when Obama took office.

The campaign focus was shifting quickly â€" to politically sensitive monthly unemployment figures due out Friday morning and the first presidential debate on Oct. 3 in Denver. Wall Street hit a four-year high a few hours before Obama's speech after the European Central Bank laid out a concrete plan to support the region's struggling countries.

The economy is by far the dominant issue in the campaign, and the differences between Obama and his challenger could hardly be more pronounced.

Romney wants to extend all tax cuts that are due to expire on Dec. 31 with an additional 20 percent reduction in rates across the board, arguing that job growth would result. He also favors deep cuts in domestic programs ranging from education to parks, repeal of the health care legislation that Obama pushed through Congress and landmark changes in Medicare, the program that provides health care to seniors.

Obama wants to renew the tax cuts except on incomes higher than $250,000, saying that millionaires should contribute to an overall attack on federal deficits. He also criticizes the spending cuts Romney advocates, saying they would fall unfairly on the poor, lower-income college students and others. He argues that Republicans would "end Medicare as we know it" and saddle seniors with ever-rising costs.

After two weeks of back-to-back conventions, the impact on the race remained to be determined.

You're not going to see big bounces in this election," said David Plouffe, a senior White House adviser. "For the next 61 days, it's going to remain tight as a tick."

Romney wrapped up several days of debate rehearsals with close aides in Vermont and is expected to resume full-time campaigning in the next day or two.

In a brief stop to talk with veterans on Thursday, he defended his decision to omit mention of the war in Afghanistan when he delivered his acceptance speech last week at the Republican National Convention. He noted he had spoken to the American Legion only one day before.

Romney's campaign released its first new television ad since the convention season began.

It shows Clinton sharply questioning Obama's credibility on the Iraq War in 2008, saying "Give me a break, this whole thing is the biggest fairy tale I've ever seen." Obama was running against Hillary Rodham Clinton at the time for the Democratic nomination.

It will likely be a week or more before the two campaigns can fully digest post-convention polls and adjust their strategies for the fall.

Based on the volume of campaign appearances to date and the hundreds of millions of dollars spent already on television advertising, the election appears likely to be decided in a small number of battleground states. The list includes New Hampshire, Virginia, Ohio, Colorado, Nevada and Iowa, as well as Florida and North Carolina, the states where first Republicans and then Democrats held their conventions. Those states hold 100 electoral votes among them, out of 270 needed to win the White House.

Money has become an ever-present concern for the Democrats, an irony given the overwhelming advantage Obama held over John McCain in the 2008 campaign.

This time, Romney is outpacing him, and independent groups seeking the Republican's election are pouring tens of millions of dollars into television advertising, far exceeding what Obama's supporters can afford.

  • Discuss
  • Print

Related Stories

Related Links

Comments » 23

August8 writes:

in response to GorchFock:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

The only thing correct in this story is the headline, the going will be tuff but Obama will not be doing it.
Oh by the way, America lost 150k manufacturing jobs in the last several months, their numbers fella.

RayPray writes:

in response to August8:

The only thing correct in this story is the headline, the going will be tuff but Obama will not be doing it.
Oh by the way, America lost 150k manufacturing jobs in the last several months, their numbers fella.

GOD has gifted us with the great OBAMA.

As soon as I saw Clinton bite his lip, I knew he was sincere and the great OBAMA was out there worrying about me 100%.

Robot Romney is lower than a dog turd. Everyone here I know has changed their vote to the sublime Barrack.

"America lost 150k manufacturing jobs in the last several months"

This is trivial. They should forget all about manufacturing and go into Hollywood or public relations, to serve our august OBAMA.

panola60 writes:

Obama can't talk about accomplishments, because he has none. Sure, he passed the Stimulus and Obamacare and Dodd Frank, but it is hard to sell any of this as success when it is all hugely unpopular and terrible policy. To most Americans, it doesn't compute.

The stimulus was a pork-laden exercise in rewarding backers of Barack through investment in crony capitalist green-energy pipe dreams and transfer payments to cities and states to help avoid having to reckon with their bloated public union payrolls (big Obama supporters). Because if you vote Barack, you should never have to go back, to a day when government wasn't bleeding the taxpayer dry with exorbitant salaries and pensions for public sector employees -- if there ever was such a time.

So...he didn't talk about the Stimulus, but he did mention his bailout of GM and Chrysler and how they can't make cars fast enough. Yet...surprisingly, saving GM -- or more precisely the UAW, has cost taxpayers more than $25 billion and GM is headed for bankruptcy, yet again. He didn't mention that. But then, why would he?

Obamacare, a multiple thousand page legislation destroying medical care in America, is ever more unpopular by the day. It turns out, you can't keep your insurance provider, even if you like it, and taking $716 billion out of Medicare cannot be portrayed as good for seniors. And...shock of all shocks, premiums will not go down and Obama's dream of transformation will cost taxpayers trillions to implement.

Dodd Frank, another multiple thousand page legislation, has solved nothing, except making it nearly impossible for people to get mortgages and businesses to get financing. He didn't mention Dodd Frank, but he did mention greedy banks. They ruined everything – after Frank, Dodd, ACORN and Obama forced them to hand out mortgages like candy to folks that couldn't afford them – thereby triggering the great mortgage meltdown which caused the great recession.

1Paradiselost writes:

Panola60

"Obama forced them to hand out mortgages?

Pan.. The banks failed while Bush was in office remember Treasury Secretary John Paulson Head of the bailout? Paulson never worked for Obama!

I could rip apart your rant!

But after reading your blog, there's only one thing I can say. Please head to your doctors office to have your head surgically removed your from your butt. It's just too dark in there for you to see, let alone hear the truth.

August8 writes:

Man, you guy's like to read and listen to yourselves !!

August8 writes:

in response to GorchFock:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Yes, so you can sit up on your couch and get zonked and play on your lap top.

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

in response to panola60:

Obama can't talk about accomplishments, because he has none. Sure, he passed the Stimulus and Obamacare and Dodd Frank, but it is hard to sell any of this as success when it is all hugely unpopular and terrible policy. To most Americans, it doesn't compute.

The stimulus was a pork-laden exercise in rewarding backers of Barack through investment in crony capitalist green-energy pipe dreams and transfer payments to cities and states to help avoid having to reckon with their bloated public union payrolls (big Obama supporters). Because if you vote Barack, you should never have to go back, to a day when government wasn't bleeding the taxpayer dry with exorbitant salaries and pensions for public sector employees -- if there ever was such a time.

So...he didn't talk about the Stimulus, but he did mention his bailout of GM and Chrysler and how they can't make cars fast enough. Yet...surprisingly, saving GM -- or more precisely the UAW, has cost taxpayers more than $25 billion and GM is headed for bankruptcy, yet again. He didn't mention that. But then, why would he?

Obamacare, a multiple thousand page legislation destroying medical care in America, is ever more unpopular by the day. It turns out, you can't keep your insurance provider, even if you like it, and taking $716 billion out of Medicare cannot be portrayed as good for seniors. And...shock of all shocks, premiums will not go down and Obama's dream of transformation will cost taxpayers trillions to implement.

Dodd Frank, another multiple thousand page legislation, has solved nothing, except making it nearly impossible for people to get mortgages and businesses to get financing. He didn't mention Dodd Frank, but he did mention greedy banks. They ruined everything – after Frank, Dodd, ACORN and Obama forced them to hand out mortgages like candy to folks that couldn't afford them – thereby triggering the great mortgage meltdown which caused the great recession.

The stimulus went to the banks. Almost all of it. Hank Paulson, turbo tax Timmy said the world would end and there would be tanks in the streets if we the tax payers didn't give these two idiots a blank check.

GM will be broke again soon. Channel stuffing is not selling cars. Dealers are being stuffed with GM cars around the world. Subprime auto lending is booming again!

We are ruining our own health care system among other industries by abandoning free market principals. Price discovery is a function of free markets, not governments. Neither party will do what needs to be done to stop it from self destructing.

Dodd-Frank hasn't and never will be implemented. The banks are still fighting it. It has nothing to do with a person getting a mortgage. We don't need Dodd-Frank. There is a perfectly good law already written. Glass-Stegal, Clinton repealed it. It was put in place after the great depression so the banks couldn't blow up the financial system. Odd how we can't learn from history?

It was Bush that created more home owners than at any time in history. That worked well?

Klaus is correct under you. It's hard to tell who is the conservative looking at Bush vs Obamas record on all things military and in cutting taxes.

All smoke and mirrors. Divide and conquer.

26yearsonmarco writes:

in response to panola60:

Obama can't talk about accomplishments, because he has none. Sure, he passed the Stimulus and Obamacare and Dodd Frank, but it is hard to sell any of this as success when it is all hugely unpopular and terrible policy. To most Americans, it doesn't compute.

The stimulus was a pork-laden exercise in rewarding backers of Barack through investment in crony capitalist green-energy pipe dreams and transfer payments to cities and states to help avoid having to reckon with their bloated public union payrolls (big Obama supporters). Because if you vote Barack, you should never have to go back, to a day when government wasn't bleeding the taxpayer dry with exorbitant salaries and pensions for public sector employees -- if there ever was such a time.

So...he didn't talk about the Stimulus, but he did mention his bailout of GM and Chrysler and how they can't make cars fast enough. Yet...surprisingly, saving GM -- or more precisely the UAW, has cost taxpayers more than $25 billion and GM is headed for bankruptcy, yet again. He didn't mention that. But then, why would he?

Obamacare, a multiple thousand page legislation destroying medical care in America, is ever more unpopular by the day. It turns out, you can't keep your insurance provider, even if you like it, and taking $716 billion out of Medicare cannot be portrayed as good for seniors. And...shock of all shocks, premiums will not go down and Obama's dream of transformation will cost taxpayers trillions to implement.

Dodd Frank, another multiple thousand page legislation, has solved nothing, except making it nearly impossible for people to get mortgages and businesses to get financing. He didn't mention Dodd Frank, but he did mention greedy banks. They ruined everything – after Frank, Dodd, ACORN and Obama forced them to hand out mortgages like candy to folks that couldn't afford them – thereby triggering the great mortgage meltdown which caused the great recession.

Excellent comment.

I'm sorry the Kool Aide Drinkers don't understand it.

26yearsonmarco writes:

in response to GorchFock:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

Problem.

O 47%
R 43%

We the People Reaction:

http://www.cnbc.com/id/48943733

1Paradiselost writes:

in response to 26yearsonmarco:

Problem.

O 47%
R 43%

We the People Reaction:

http://www.cnbc.com/id/48943733

So what's your point?

August8 writes:

in response to 1Paradiselost:

So what's your point?

If you are going to rely on these numbers as biased as they can be presented go ahead, I think when it's all said and done, a vote for change in the most powerful terms in our history.
Now, will anyone agree that it makes you want to vomit when this guy Obama goes on the campaign trail screaming street talk and wanting American's to vote for him?

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

in response to 26yearsonmarco:

Excellent comment.

I'm sorry the Kool Aide Drinkers don't understand it.

Excellent post? It's a little off.

Dodd-Frank hasn't been implemented, and has nothing to do with mortgages. Without the re-implementation of Glass-Stegal, turbo Timmy, and Bernanke will be back asking for a blank check again telling us the world will end if the big banks go down. They are already insolvent minus the accounting games being played. No mark to market, etc. This game can only last so long. Math is not a policy, or assumption.

Bush was the one championing the high rate of home ownership. He did see the problem developing, it was too late by that time. Bernanke said mortgages wouldn't be a problem. Brilliant guy that Bernanke is.

Gm bail out is mostly correct regarding the unions.

Green energy is B.S. at this point.

Health care will self destruct soon. Obama and the Republicans won't do what's necessary to fix it.

26yearsonmarco writes:

in response to 1Paradiselost:

So what's your point?

This might help you get my point:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_A...

1Paradiselost writes:

in response to 26yearsonmarco:

This might help you get my point:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_A...

No one has tried to take your gun away from you, have they?

A smart person would have bought SWHC stock a year ago and picked up 275%.

I'm very happy with the market under Obama.

http://www.cnbc.com/id/48943733

panola60 writes:

Obama says "the road is longer". . .

How can the road be "longer" when we've been traveling down Obama's road for nearly 4 years?

Romney / Ryan 2012

ajm3s writes:

in response to panola60:

Obama says "the road is longer". . .

How can the road be "longer" when we've been traveling down Obama's road for nearly 4 years?

Romney / Ryan 2012

The road may not be longer, but rather Mr. Obama having driven the car into the ditch, and he and his administration is having a difficult time getting out, even with his foot on the pedal. And the Republicans as bystanders see a futile effort as the tires spin with the car not going forward.

....with a bumper sticker "OBAMA FORWARD" on the rear.

And the citizens passing by at a slow rate of speed, calling 911 to report a hazard. Then following up with a text message to friends only to be reminded the date is 11/06/2012. Is it time for a change?

Vote 2012!

LOL

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

David Stockman, former Reagan administration budget director spitting the truth on CNBC this morning. He will never be invited back. CNBC does not like criticism of central banks, or someone that speaks the truth. Watch Mr. Stockman. He lays it out pretty well. Or, keep arguing about who's party can F up the country more than it already is. http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=...

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

What's happening in Greece is fascinating. While Greece is a small country I believe it is a model of what will happen in larger nations as they destroy themselves from within economically, socially, and morally. http://www.thetrumpet.com/article/983... This will spiral into a disaster for the people of Greece as time goes on. Irony, the inventors of capitalism spiraling back into communism. Just as the stages of the republic spell out.

I know most people here in the US, and other western nations are distracted by the bread and circuses, lies from the left and the right, and believe that nothing like this could ever happen in America. That everything is rose colored, and that unicorns really do exist. Keep believing that! I also have some bridges to sell you. I promise they can only go up in value!

WhiskeyTangoFoxtrot writes:

Greece is important. Much as a scale model airplane in a wind tunnel is for determining aerodynamic properties of the plane. Greece is in my opinion important to observe because it's politicians have spent the country into economic, social, and moral collapse while the Greek people were arguing what political party was best and attending the circus eating the government bread. I am interested in seeing what happens to power in Greece. What happens when the ECB and IMF say no more? Spain and Italy should be paying attention as should all over indebted nations. Spain and Italy are just next in line.

There is no solution. It's just human nature. We run through the history books in a boom & bust type cycle. I think the bust is coming.

August8 writes:

in response to GorchFock:

(This comment was removed by the site staff.)

You have a lot of nerve calling anyone discusting or s-----, it seems that by reading your posts and beliefs you had a hand in the book.I wonder if you know Obama's pasture?

RayNetherwood writes:

Ha ha ha ha ha .... Klaus, still proudly goose-stepping I see. You and Dirtbag Barry share one thing in common, even with GWB, have never had an original thought.

liberator100 writes:

Excellent remark MarcoBiker. You figured Klaus out too. It was not that hard now, was it? Obama will lose the Presidency but for reasons you have not yet figured out. Wait, read and listen carefuly. Klaus, more Kool Aide for you.

1Paradiselost writes:

You rednecks make me laugh. Let me repeat

"When the brain eating aliens come to earth, Rednecks, and Fox viewers will be safe"

Share your thoughts

Comments are the sole responsibility of the person posting them. You agree not to post comments that are off topic, defamatory, obscene, abusive, threatening or an invasion of privacy. Violators may be banned. Click here for our full user agreement.

Comments can be shared on Facebook and Yahoo!. Add both options by connecting your profiles.

Features