News

    Bush: US Economy is Sound Despite Problems

    Multimedia

    Audio

    U.S. President George Bush says the U.S. economy is sound, despite a series of financial setbacks.  VOA's Paula Wolfson reports at a White House news conference Mr. Bush sought to reassure consumers unnerved by rising gas prices and uncertainty in the housing market.

    The president acknowledges this is a difficult time for American families, but he says the economy will eventually rebound.

    "We can have confidence in the long term foundation of our economy.  And I believe we will come through this challenge stronger than ever before," he said.

    Mr. Bush says his administration is already taking steps to deal with the nation's financial woes.   And he blames the Democratic Party-led U.S. Congress for holding up further action.

    He says lawmakers need to pass legislation to make sure major mortgage lenders are sound.   And he urges them to act swiftly to lift the congressional ban on offshore oil drilling.

    "Democratic leaders have been delaying action on offshore exploration and now they have an opportunity to show that they finally heard the frustrations of the American people," he added.

    On Monday, the president removed White House restrictions on offshore oil exploration.  But both the executive and legislative branches must act before new drilling can occur along America's coastlines.

    House Speaker Nancy Pelosi calls the president's oil exploration plan a hoax and urges the administration to tap the nation's emergency Strategic Petroleum Reserve.  Mr. Bush rejects that idea.  He says there is no short-term answer to the oil price problem, but adds a show of American resolve to expand domestic exploration would send a powerful signal to world markets.

    "I readily concede it is not going to produce a barrel of oil tomorrow, but it is going to change the psychology that demand will constantly outstrip supply," he noted.

    The president also used his press conference to urge Congress to approve a pending free-trade agreement with Colombia.  He said the pact will enable the United States to sell more goods in the Colombian market, and will help a strong U.S. ally in the region, President Alvaro Uribe.

    "Turning our back on somebody like Uribe makes no sense at all," he explained.  "He is a courageous fighter against terrorists and yet our Congress won't even bring up a free trade agreement with Colombia."

    The session with reporters was held on a day that the nation's largest automaker, General Motors, provided more bad economic news.

    Faced with slumping sales, the company announced cuts in production of trucks and other large vehicles.  It also said it would slash job benefits for its work force and retirees, such as health insurance and pensions, by 20 percent.

    The president did not speak directly about GM's fate.  But he did say the government would not provide a bail-out.

    "If your question is should the government bail-out private enterprise, the answer is no, it shouldn't," he said.

    Mr. Bush said the auto industry must adapt to changing consumer demands.  And he stressed the demand right now is for smaller, more fuel-efficient cars.

    This forum has been closed.
    Comments
         
    There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trendi
    X
    May 27, 2016 5:57 AM
    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Chinese-Americans Heart Trump, Bucking National Trend

    A new study conducted by three Asian-American organizations shows there are three times as many Democrats as there are Republicans among Asian-American voters, and they favor Hillary Clinton over Donald Trump. But one group, called Chinese-Americans For Trump, is going against the tide and strongly supports the business tycoon. VOA’s Elizabeth Lee caught up with them at a Trump rally and reports from Anaheim, California.
    Video

    Video Reactions to Trump's Success Polarized Abroad

    What seemed impossible less than a year ago is now almost a certainty. New York real estate mogul Donald Trump has won the number of delegates needed to secure the Republican presidential nomination. The prospect has sparked as much controversy abroad as it has in the United States. Zlatica Hoke has more.
    Video

    Video Drawings by Children in Hiroshima Show Hope and Peace

    On Friday, President Barack Obama will visit Hiroshima, Japan, the first American president to do so while in office. In August 1945, the United States dropped an atomic bomb on the city to force Japan's surrender in World War II. Although their city lay in ruins, some Hiroshima schoolchildren drew pictures of hope and peace. The former students and their drawings are now part of a documentary called “Pictures from a Hiroshima Schoolyard.” VOA's Deborah Block has the story.
    Video

    Video Vietnamese Rapper Performs for Obama

    A prominent young Vietnamese artist told President Obama said she faced roadblocks as a woman rapper, and asked the president about government support for the arts. He asked her to rap, and he even offered to provide a base beat for her. Watch what happened.
    Video

    Video Roots Run Deep for Tunisia's Dwindling Jewish Community

    This week, hundreds of Jewish pilgrims are defying terrorist threats to celebrate an ancient religious festival on the Tunisian island of Djerba. The festivities cast a spotlight on North Africa's once-vibrant Jewish population that has all but died out in recent decades. Despite rising threats of militant Islam and the country's battered economy, one of the Arab world's last Jewish communities is staying put and nurturing a new generation. VOA’s Lisa Bryant reports.
    Video

    Video Meet Your New Co-Worker: The Robot

    Increasing numbers of robots are joining the workforce, as companies scale back and more processes become automated. The latest robots are flexible and collaborative, built to work alongside humans as opposed to replacing them. VOA’s Tina Trinh looks at the next generation of automated employees helping out their human colleagues.
    Video

    Video Wheelchair Technology in Tune With Times

    Technologies for the disabled, including wheelchair technology, are advancing just as quickly as everything else in the digital age. Two new advances in wheelchairs offer improved control and a more comfortable fit. VOA's George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Baby Boxes Offer Safe Haven for Unwanted Children

    No one knows exactly how many babies are abandoned worldwide each year. The statistic is a difficult one to determine because it is illegal in most places. Therefore unwanted babies are often hidden and left to die. But as Erika Celeste reports from Woodburn, Indiana, a new program hopes to make surrendering infants safer for everyone.
    Video

    Video California Celebration Showcases Local Wines, Balloons

    Communities in the U.S. often hold festivals to show what makes them special. In California, for example, farmers near Fresno celebrate their figs and those around Gilmore showcase their garlic. Mike O'Sullivan reports that the wine-producing region of Temecula offers local vintages in an annual festival where rides on hot-air balloons add to the excitement.
    Video

    Video US Elementary School Offers Living Science Lessons

    Zero is not a good score on a test at school. But Discovery Elementary is proud of its “net zero” rating. Net zero describes a building in which the amount of energy provided by on-site renewable sources equals the amount of energy the building uses. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, the innovative features in the building turn the school into a teaching tool, where kids can't help but learn about science and sustainability. Faith Lapidus narrates.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora