Previewing the President’s Economic Speech
President Obama heads to Georgetown University today to address the nation regarding the economy. On MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Christina Romer, chair of the Council of Economic Advisers, offered a preview of the speech’s message. Politico has the write-up.
Romer said Obama will address “what’s been going wrong” in the economy and also what the administration is doing to help.
The economic adviser said the administration is expecting to see some growth in 2011 or 2012.
“It certainly will take some time,” she said, adding that Obama knows the American people are still in for a rough time.
“That is something that he’s aware of,” Romer said.
Talking about the economy, no matter how he chooses to frame it, is tricky for Obama. People are worried about their jobs and mortgages, and angry about government bailouts. They want to know more about what kind of economic strategy the government has in mind.
At The Fix, Chris Cillizza says Republicans are looking at the speech as a possible opening to pin the economy’s woes on Obama:
Chris Wilson, a Republican pollster, added that the content of Obama’s speech today and how he frames the crisis are critical in determining how the message is received by the public.
“If he gives another speech like those he has given so far, the actual message America perceives will quickly change from ‘it’s the other guy’s fault’ to ‘I don’t know how to fix this,’” predicted Wilson. “When that happens, not only does Obama ‘own’ the problem, he starts to drown in it.”
So far, however, the public hasn’t blamed Obama for the economy, and Republicans haven’t put forward any economic ideas that have been embraced as possible alternatives to the government’s approach. It’s not surprising Obama would choose to continue addressing the biggest problem facing most Americans. But despite Wilson’s assertions, it doesn’t necessarily follow that the political stakes will be that high. Sometimes a speech on the economy really is just about the economy, and not about the polls.
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