Sunday, March 8, 2009

NY Times Obama Interview

"As he pressed forward with ambitious plans at home to rewrite the tax code, expand health care coverage and curb climate change, Mr. Obama dismissed criticism from conservatives that he was driving the country toward socialism.

After the interview, which took place as the president was flying home from Ohio, he called reporters from the Oval Office to assert that his actions have been “entirely consistent with free-market principles” and to point out that large-scale government intervention in the markets and expansion of social welfare programs began under President George W. Bush:

President Obama: Just one thing I was thinking about as I was getting on the copter. It was hard for me to believe that you were entirely serious about that socialist question. I did think it might be useful to point out that it wasn't under me that we started buying a bunch of shares of banks. It wasn't on my watch. And it wasn't on my watch that we passed a massive new entitlement - the prescription drug plan without a source of funding. And so I think it's important just to note when you start hearing folks through these words around that we've actually been operating in a way that has been entirely consistent with free-market principles and that some of the same folks who are throwing the word socialist around can't say the same."

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