Obama previews rhetoric for mid-term elections

By Alister Bull

BOSTON (BestGrowthStock) – President Barack Obama, in a preview of the election campaign Democrats will roll out later this year, recalled on Thursday the economic mess he inherited from the Republicans while saying the change he had promised upon winning the White House is being delivered.

In remarks sown with references to the recession that Obama says his actions helped reverse, he assured fellow Democrats that his overhaul of the $2.5 trillion U.S. healthcare sector will yield genuine benefits for ordinary Americans.

“The change you fought for is beginning to take hold,” he told a fund-raising speech in Boston.

The reassurance may have been needed. Opinion polls show many Americans are skeptical about the cost and scale of Obama’s healthcare measures, risking possible Democratic losses in mid-term congressional elections in November.

Republican lawmakers, who opposed the bill unanimously, are targeting Democratic lawmakers who voted for the healthcare legislation. Opposition to Obama’s healthcare proposals has energized the Republicans’ conservative base.

Shrugging off such concern, the president said unpopularity was a badge of honor that showed his administration was doing the right thing.

“If you govern by pundits and polls you lose sight of why you got into public service in the first place,” he said. “My job wasn’t to husband my popularity, make sure I wasn’t making waves. It’s how a lot of folks govern. It’s easy.”

Americans remain anxious over still-sluggish economic growth and national unemployment of 9.7 percent. Obama signed a $787 billion economic stimulus package last year to create jobs, but knows it will take time to pay dividends, and in the meantime his best defense is to keep reminding voters that it was the Republicans who are to blame.

He invoked the bailout of Wall Street launched by his Republican predecessor George W. Bush, and promised the audience that every dime of taxpayers’ money would be recouped, before reminding them about the rescue of U.S. automakers who were now hiring again.

In addition to healthcare, Obama also touted the nuclear arms reduction treaty with Russia to be signed on April 8 in Prague and education finance reforms, while warning of the looming fight to reform Wall Street and deliver on climate-change legislation.

But in a coded reference to the election setback some Democrats worry lies ahead in November, Obama recalled he had addressed a similar crowd of loyal supporters in Boston after losing the Democratic primary in New Hampshire to his then-rival Hillary Clinton — before going on to win the Democratic nomination and ultimately triumph in the 2008 presidential election.

“We’re going to be OK. We’re going to be better than OK,” he said.

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(Editing by Will Dunham)

Obama previews rhetoric for mid-term elections