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Obama: World Leaders Working Together to Solve Financial Crisis


U.S. President Barack Obama says the world's major economies are working together to solve the financial crisis, but they have more work to do. The president is also promoting tougher rules on Wall Street to protect consumers.

President Obama says the coming week's G-20 summit of major economies will be a five-month checkup of the progress each nation has made toward ending the crisis since their last meeting in April.

In his weekly Internet and radio address, the president says a major focus of the summit in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania will be to better regulate the world's financial markets.

"We will discuss some of the steps that are required to safeguard our global financial system and close gaps in regulation around the world-gaps that permitted the kinds of reckless risk-taking and irresponsibility that led to the crisis," said the president.

Mr. Obama says the U.S. has also made progress in regulating its financial markets, but also has more work to do.

"We cannot allow the thirst for reckless schemes that produce quick profits and fat executive bonuses to override the security of our entire financial system and leave taxpayers on the hook for cleaning up the mess," he said.

The president wants to create a Consumer Financial Protection Agency, which would more strictly regulate Wall Street and prevent lenders from misleading consumers. He says lax regulation of the lending industry was one of the main causes of the U.S. economic meltdown.

"While many folks took on more than they knew they could afford, too often folks signed contracts they did not fully understand, offered by lenders who did not always tell the truth," said the president. "That is why we need clear rules, clearly enforced. And that is what this agency will do."

Mr. Obama's plan to reform the U.S. health care system is under fire in this week's Republican Party message.

Representative Sue Myrick from the Southern state of North Carolina says the Democrats' health reform plans would lead to a government-run health care system.

"These so-called health care reform bills have different names: a public option, a co-op, a trigger," she said. "Make no mistake-these are all gateways to government-run health care."

Myrick warns that Democratic-backed bills being debated in Congress would lead to potentially deadly delays in treatment.

She says that during her own fight against breast cancer, she needed numerous tests. Myrick says she would not have received the help as promptly under a government-run plan like those in Canada and the United Kingdom.

"I would not have had the opportunity to get those tests so quickly," she said. "One international study found that three times as many citizens in those countries wait longer than a month to see a specialist than we do in the United States."

President Obama will take his campaign for health reform to the airwaves on Sunday. He will appear on five television talk shows on Sunday, then will be a guest on David Letterman's late-night entertainment program on Monday.

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