July 23rd, 2011
10:25 AM ET

Obama: There's still time for debt deal

Washington (CNN) - President Obama encouraged members of both parties to find a balanced agreement to raise the debt ceiling ahead of the August 2 deadline. In his weekly address released Saturday, ahead of his meeting with Congressional leaders, Obama said the debate "boils down to a simple choice."

"We can come together for the good of the country and reach a compromise; we can strengthen our economy and leave for our children a more secure future.  Or we can issue insults and demands and ultimatums at each another, withdraw to our partisan corners, and achieve nothing," Obama said. "We know the right thing to do.  And we know what the American people expect us to do."

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soundoff (29 Responses)
  1. Ray E. Georgia

    The Republicians have come forward with a good plan. The House passed the CUT, CAP AND BALANCE Bill. Pass it! The other OPTION is to raise the Debt Celing without any fiscal responsibility. The problem with that is down the road in a few years they will want to raise the Debt Celing again. The problem with that is the 1930's will look like a summer picnic.

    July 23, 2011 at 11:25 am |
    • jean2009

      Just end the Bush era tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans...what Republicans don't understand is if you don't earn $250,000 a year, the Bush tax cuts were welfare for the rich. The middle class that doesn't make that amount carries a heavier burden of taxes under the Bush tax plan.

      The Hoover plan, The Reagan plan, and The Bush plan for tax-cuts for the wealthy has destroyed the middle class...the third time through the trickle down theory of national economic collapse is no more a charm than the first two were.

      I wouldn't trust Republicans to come through with a financial plan for operating a lemonade stand.

      July 23, 2011 at 12:24 pm |
      • Howard


        July 23, 2011 at 12:50 pm |
      • Bill in STL

        Simple logic will help you understand.... but you have to leave your party line behind, the same as I have....

        If I am woth 1 million dollars, and the business I own is the reason I am worth that amount... then if my taxes go up and or the taxes on my business go up then that is part of the cost of doing business. everything from the phone to gas for my trucks to the pencils I buy for staff are part of the cost of doing business.... and so are taxes. If you reduce the profit of the company, that puts job creation on hold since I would not have the funds to sustain those jobs. So I have a choice ... downsize my business or raise my prices... You have to understand here that I am in this business to grow it and not to pay your bills from my profits.... (By your bills I mean the government on your behalf). If I raise prices ..... who pays them.... You do jean..... you and all the other people who buy what I sell....

        SO Who really pays those tax increases you keep yelling about????? YOU DO JEAN....

        July 24, 2011 at 2:01 am |
      • jean2009

        @ Bill ...so you are trying to tell me that the reason the gasoline in a businesses' storage tank can change price 20 cents, in less than 15 minutes, is not greed? I understand higher taxes can change prices, but then I also realize I want our government to function in a responsible way for the bulk of Americans, not just a privileged few, and if that means a few cents more... than so be it.

        I really didn't see people hurting as much during the Clinton era as they are as the result of Bush era lower taxes. As a matter of fact, the Clinton tax era created 22 million jobs, and the Bush tax era only created 1.1 million, and both presidents served 8 years. The Republican philosophy of governing and taxes is just plain flawed each time it has been tried it has devastated the economy...said from 76 years of experience.

        July 24, 2011 at 9:24 am |
      • Time.ToThink

        Higher tax rate does not always produce higher revenue. BTW why didn't you mention the JFK tax cuts? If you believe the rhetoric of either party and are biased accordingly, you are doomed to speaking erroneously. If the Dems had really wanted to raise taxes, they controlled both houses for two years. The reason they are now saying tax the rich is to get votes in 2012.

        This article was written in 2007:

        "What has happened to tax rates in America over the last several decades?

        They’ve fallen. In the early 1960s, the highest marginal income tax rate was a stunning 91 percent. That top rate fell to 70 percent after the Kennedy-Johnson tax cuts and remained there until 1981. Then Ronald Reagan slashed it to 50 percent and ultimately to 28 percent after the 1986 Tax Reform Act. Although the federal tax rate fell by more than half, total tax receipts in the 1980s doubled from $517 billion in 1981 to $1,030 billion in 1990. The top tax rate rose slightly under George H. W. Bush and then moved to 39.6 percent under Bill Clinton. But under George W. Bush it fell again to 35 percent. So what’s striking is that, even as tax rates have fallen by half over the past quarter-century, taxes paid by the wealthy have increased. Lower tax rates have made the tax system more progressive, not less so. In 1980, for example, the top 5 percent of income earners paid only 37 percent of all income taxes. Today, the top 1 percent pay that proportion, and the top 5 percent pay a whopping 57 percent."

        "What income group pays the most federal income taxes today?

        The latest data show that a big portion of the federal income tax burden is shoul dered by a small group of the very richest Americans. The wealthiest 1 percent of the population earn 19 per cent of the income but pay 37 percent of the income tax. The top 10 percent pay 68 percent of the tab. Meanwhile, the bottom 50 percent—those below the median income level—now earn 13 percent of the income but pay just 3 percent of the taxes."

        July 24, 2011 at 3:40 pm |
      • Bill in STL

        So let me get this straight. You want the government to equalize what each American citizen can accomplish..... You don't want anyone with a good idea or a work ethic of great accomplishment to be rewarded for those things... In your view it is the responsibility of goverment to take from the doers and give to the non-doers ... and that is fair in your view. Why don't you consider this .... If you have 76 years of life experience then you are retired. There are people that do not have what you have (no matter how much that is) and to make it fair lets take half of what you have and give it to the non-doers ... even those that are capable and choose not to. This would be the right thing to do.... seeing the world the way you do.

        July 24, 2011 at 10:49 pm |
      • jean2009

        @ Bill their you go with your entitlements rant again.

        Let's look at it from my 76 year perspective. You work all your life put into the system, pay for your SS, save your money, and some greedy "doer" rigs the stock market via inflated bonuses against your retirement account, some greedy war profiteer thinks he can make a bundle via using your SS benefits as collateral for him to profit on a war? Some one with a business accepts subsidies and a lower tax rate, but still doesn't pay his employees a living wage so that we all wind up pay for his folly.

        Should I go on?

        July 25, 2011 at 9:12 am |
      • jean2009

        @Time To Think:

        In what parallel universe do you live. The Bush tax cuts benefited the wealthiest 2% more than any other group of Americans. It was the middle-class that was the worst hit, and those who live on retirement savings, and the bomb his policies dropped on public foundations was a disaster.

        From the New York Times:
        Published: January 8, 2007
        WASHINGTON, Jan. 7 — Families earning more than $1 million a year saw their federal tax rates drop more sharply than any group in the country as a result of President Bush’s tax cuts, according to a new Congressional study.
        The study, by the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, also shows that tax rates for middle-income earners edged up in 2004, the most recent year for which data was available, while rates for people at the very top continued to decline.

        From the Hillbilly Report:

        Middle class Americans with a little money to invest were put in a bind.
        They had 4 options:

        * Spend their money.

        * Put their money under a mattress.

        * Put their money in a FDIC insured CD with a yield lower than inflation rates....like 1% if that.

        * Hand their money over to Wall Street in order to get reasonable earnings on their money.

        "As you can see, middle class Americans with a little spare change were being squeezed by George W. Bush. The fact that FDIC insured CD interest rates were being artificially lowered by the FED was nothing more than a tax increase on Americans wanting a secure FDIC insured CD with a fair return on their money, but that's just the beginning of "The Great George W. Bush Tax Increase."

        George W. Bush was determined to be a two term President and didn't want to be like his father and serve one term because of a recession, but George W. Bush had a huge problem. How was he going to decimate our manufacturing base increase the trade deficit and spur the economy all at the same time? Well starting a phony war in Iraq would help spur the economy, but he knew that wouldn't be enough, but if he could steal enough money from middle America and hand it over to his rich pals they could spur the economy by building homes and sell these homes with creative financing. The perfect plan, all home grown and he could still export our manufacturing base and increase our trade deficit all at the same time.
        Well George W. Bush managed to keep the economy stumbling a long and did what his dad couldn't do, he got elected to a second term.
        It was during his second term George W. Bush realized his perfect plan was about to explode in his face. He knew there was a mortgage/housing crisis and the only way to solve it was to steal some more money from middle Americans and transfer it to his rich Wall Street pals. So how could George W. Bush keep his Wall Street pals solvent? Easy, just convince the American people to privatize Social Security. "

        July 25, 2011 at 7:54 pm |
    • ALA

      I don't know where were you when Ronald Reagon raised 11 times, George Bush 7 times raised the debt ceiling. Bush wrote blank cheques, single handedly built up this huge debt. Where were you? Shame on those guys who run for congress just to play superman – my way or highway mentality. These TP super ego play God, betray your own country, your own people who thought you can reason, protect the interest of the country, as a whole. silent majority, pick up your phone, call your congressman, senator to register your protest urge them to act responsibly. don't let these TP destroy this wonderful country.

      July 24, 2011 at 9:49 am |
  2. 4merRepubCT

    Thankfully, Cut, Cap and Balance is widely understood to be political theater, even by those who brought it to the floor and voted for it. It is foolish at best and dangerous at best. How would the U.S. deal with the need for increase protective military action with a cap? or natural disaster relief? or any unexpected financial demand?

    July 23, 2011 at 11:40 am |
  3. Julie

    With each passing day, I am more amazed at the power of a small, fringe group of corporate-funded and self-serving Tea Partiers to derail a remarkable country's economy and well-being....with little more than their "gut feelings" about complex economic issues in a world that's obviously out-paced their ability to participate in effectively and intelligently governing it. This U.S. debt issue needed to be addressed, but the amount of energy expended to make certain the debt ceiling is raised – to avoid almost certain economic catastrophe according to bi-partisan economic experts – is not only shocking but sad. Our children deserve so much better than this of our politicans (and the citizens who voted them into office). We will certainly pay a collective price in our country if our politicians – particularly the freshman House Republican members – continue to act like small children on a playground – throwing a tantrum if they do not get their entire way. And, I am happy to see that poll numbers reflect a growing number of Americans are with me in this view, despite the Republicans' increasingly desperate and pathetic attempts to cite that "the American People" are with them in their short-sighted, ill-informed and emotionally-based rants – that they try to masquerade as "policy-making." Even Ronald Reagan would be aghast, as well as many of the truly great Republicans that have come before. I guess everything we need to know we truly do learn in kindergarten – like good manners and sharing the playground.

    July 23, 2011 at 11:48 am |
  4. Bryan N

    The republican's seem to be increasingly lead by the fringe extremist of their party. What happened to the times when the two sides would compromise...now its "do exactly what we say or no deal". Independents, please pay attention to these negotiations or lack there of.

    July 23, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
  5. maikl

    Yes, it's still time to Obama ask for resignation and it will help everybody. No more experiment . No experience , no real job, nothing. The worse president ever. Carter can relax , he is second.

    July 23, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
    • jean2009

      Reagan and Bush the two worst presidents of my 76 years.

      Obama-Biden 2012

      July 24, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
      • John

        76 years and you hold a government job. Amazing how dems need to lie to get their point across.

        July 25, 2011 at 11:17 am |
      • jean2009

        John I'm 76, I'm retired, and I never worked for the government. If you think you are going to do to me what you did to Liz...it isn't happening. I will speak my mind and not be scared off.

        Plan and simple I can see through your tactics and the tactics of those who pay you.

        July 25, 2011 at 7:59 pm |
  6. stingray

    I am a republican and I am very ashamed to admit to being a republican, anyone who wants to be honest knows that the reason Boehner is not wantting to continue talks with Presidenat Obama is that our President is BLACK, A no no to people like Boehner. Our President's hands have been tight since day one. First he was on the news daily because Trump said our President was not an American, then it was said the President is not doing his job!!! Now He is not doing anything to help our country. But have all of you stopped to think of what out President could if he had free reins just like a white Presidents has????? He trying to help everyone. When President Reagan raised the debt ceiling during his term, it quite and quick , it didn't drag on for months, But President Obama is a black man so what is Boehner and people like him trying to do, let America default so we all Republican cans It President Obama fault because he didn't do this or he didn't do that, but when he tries we as republicans through everything into the works to stop it. Like I said I am a Republican but I don't want to be responsible for the elderly and the poor to suffer or die, because I choose to think about myself only. Why can't we Reublicans and Demacrats step aside let him do his job, let save our country before it is to late for everyone.

    July 23, 2011 at 5:51 pm |
    • John


      July 25, 2011 at 11:18 am |
    • John

      btw, the debt ceiling was raised short term 38 times in 10 years – something this president refuses to do.

      July 25, 2011 at 11:20 am |
    • jean2009

      Thank you....however be aware John will try to scare off anyone who speaks their mind, and anyone who speaks the truth.
      He hasn't enough sense to realize that the teaparty (the same as the Know Nothing Party in the 1850's) has hijacked what was is the Republican Party and is trying to turn America into a Nazi state for the benefit of the very wealthy.

      July 25, 2011 at 8:08 pm |
  7. stingray

    I voted for you I believed in you then and I believe in you and what you are trying to do for our country. Don't let no one bully down because I see and hear you are the little people like me. Don't let the rich and the richer push away from doing the right think. This why we the voters who voted for elected you to do the right thing. Mr. President I don't know if you see this or even read it but I want you to know that if you don't raise the debt ceilling my wife and I will suffer right along with all the other million of social security receiptances who depend on ss from month to month. Please do the right by America!!

    July 23, 2011 at 5:58 pm |
  8. Bill in STL

    Why do liberals keep talking about a debt deal and not a solution????

    July 24, 2011 at 2:01 am |
  9. molleja

    Regan didn't care about politics. He REALLY loved America. He had a deep respect and humbleness for the office of President. H was a GREAT president. Obama is the WORST president, EVER. C'mon America, lets make him a ONE term president. America cannot take 4 more years of this scheming, deceitful, lying, incompetent president wannabe.

    July 24, 2011 at 6:10 pm |
    • jean2009

      Reagan and Bush II worst presidents of my 76 years.

      July 25, 2011 at 8:09 pm |
      • Jay in NC

        Tonight Barry quoted President Reagan, said that he agreed with him. Do you and Barry disagree?

        July 25, 2011 at 11:01 pm |
  10. Nancy

    The markets will show these incompetent fools the finger tomorrow morning. The Asian markets are already down. You played with my money you jerks. Hope you all lose every dime you own.

    July 24, 2011 at 11:15 pm |
  11. Doug B.

    Obama, we are relying on you to not back down again! You are supposed to be the executive governor of our system!
    Just Do It! The Bush tax cuts have been killing us and they need to go! When there is a war, someone has to pay for it and I wish the middle class would unite and say enough is enough! There is no logic to the upper 2% receiving special tax breaks! What ever happened to being equal under law? If Boehner outplays you, you will be removed next election, but it won't open the door to any republican, who wants the business world to bury the poor, of which, they are increasing! Republicans want another figure head that they can control. LETS WRITE IN LEWIS BLACK FOR PRESIDENT!

    July 25, 2011 at 11:31 am |
  12. justin tyme

    Heres how you fix the debt crisis. Claim Mars, the planet, as an American asset. Assess a monetary value for that asset. Use that asset to pay off all debt. Create a comprehensive, long-term financial plan for the acquisition of said asset and put people back to work by ramping up space colonization effort. Make sure get rid of unsecure credit arrangments altogether. People shouldn't live outside their means anyways, that's what got us in this mess to begin with. Instead offer more research grants, scholarships, and better public schools. Give our country a real purpose for once, give us something real to do, give us a chance at infinity for once. Make America all about colonizing space as a means to ensure the ultimate survival of the human species and quit playing the games. Americans need to wake up and see tht they are here for that reason which is freedom to live. We are the greatest society of known history, we forged this country from blood, sweat, and tears so we cannot forsake the sacrifice when we are counted on the most to succeed. Americans need to remember what being American really means, which is staying true to the cause no matter who bad things seem to be because there will always be the light of liberty we need only reach for it once more. We are Americans and space colonization is the Manifest Destiny of our generation. Long live logic and love as they are the only tools that one can use to adequately rule. We can do this and if enough people beliueve in it, we will do this.

    July 25, 2011 at 12:53 pm |