News / USA

Obama: Election 'Shellacking' Shows Economic Frustration

President Barack Obama makes an opening statement during a news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington, 3 Nov 2010
President Barack Obama makes an opening statement during a news conference in the East Room of the White House in Washington, 3 Nov 2010
Kent Klein

U.S. President Barack Obama says opposition Republicans' major gains in Tuesday's midterm elections show that Americans are frustrated with the country's economic problems.  The president also pledged to work with Republicans to solve those problems.

President Obama faced reporters Wednesday, and blamed the sluggish economy for Democrats' big losses at the polls.

"Yesterday's vote confirmed what I have heard from folks all across America," said President Obama. "People are frustrated, they are deeply frustrated with the pace of our economic recovery and the opportunities they hope for their children and their grandchildren.

Most of the hour-long White House press conference focused on the economy, and the president accepted responsibility for the slow recovery.

"Over the last two years we have made progress, but clearly too many Americans have not felt that progress yet, and they told us that yesterday," said Mr. Obama. "And as president, I take responsibility for that."

Republicans won control of the House of Representatives, gaining far more than the 39 seats they needed to move into the majority.  Democrats still hold a majority in the Senate, but lost several seats to the Republicans.

Republican John Boehner, now the House Minority Leader, will almost certainly become Speaker of the House.  Boehner has fought against most of Mr. Obama's initiatives, including the health care reform law, which the Republican leader has pledged to try to repeal.

The president called Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell Tuesday night, and said he will try to work with them to solve the country's problems.

"I told John Boehner and Mitch McConnell last night I am very eager to sit down with members of both parties and figure out how we can move forward together," said President Obama. "I am not suggesting this will be easy."

Boehner said Wednesday he looks forward to cooperating with the president, but will not abandon the principles that propelled his party to victory on Tuesday.

"We discussed working together on the American people's priorities-cutting spending, creating jobs-and we hope that he will continue to be willing to work with us on those priorities," said Boehner. "But as I said last night, the new majority here in Congress will be the voice of the American people, and I think we clearly expressed that last night."

When a reporter asked Mr. Obama how it felt to watch so many of his Democratic allies being turned out of office, he replied bluntly, It feels bad.  But he said the experience may help him to become a better president by staying in closer touch with the American people.

"Now, I am not recommending for every future president that they take a shellacking like I did last night," said Mr. Obama. "I am sure there are easier ways to learn these lessons.  But I do think that this is a growth process and an evolution."

Mr. Obama also pointed out that former presidents Ronald Reagan and Bill Clinton suffered heavy losses in their first midterm elections and were both re-elected two years later.

Related video report by Laurel Bowman:

You May Like

Will Cuba Follow the Southeast Asia Model?

Decision to restore ties between US and Cuba has some debating whether it will lead to an enhancement or regression of democracy on the Communist island nation More

Kenyan Designer Finds Her Niche in Fashion Industry

‘Made in China’ fabrics underlie her success More

Report: CIA, Israel's Mossad Killed Senior Hezbollah Commander

The Washington Post story says Imad Mughniyah was killed instantly by a bomb "triggered remotely" from Tel Aviv by Mossad agents More

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.
Jefferson's Library Continues to Impress, 200 Years Lateri
X
Deborah Block
January 31, 2015 12:12 AM
Two hundred years after the U.S. Congress purchased a huge collection of books belonging to former President Thomas Jefferson, it remains one of America’s greatest literal treasures and has become the centerpiece of Washington’s Library of Congress. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.
Video

Video Jefferson's Library Continues to Impress, 200 Years Later

Two hundred years after the U.S. Congress purchased a huge collection of books belonging to former President Thomas Jefferson, it remains one of America’s greatest literal treasures and has become the centerpiece of Washington’s Library of Congress. VOA’s Deborah Block reports.
Video

Video Egypt's Suez Canal Dreams Tempered by Continued Unrest

Egypt plans to expand the Suez Canal, raising hopes that the end of its economic crisis may be in sight. But some analysts say they expect the project may cost too much and take too long to make life better for everyday Egyptians. VOA's Heather Murdock reports.
Video

Video Threat of Creeping Lava Has Hawaiians on Edge

Residents of the small town of Pahoa on the Big Island of Hawaii face an advancing threat from the Kilauea volcano. Local residents are keeping a watchful eye on creeping lava. Mike O’Sullivan reports.
Video

Video Pro-Kremlin Youth Group Creatively Promotes 'Patriotic' Propaganda

As Russia's President Vladimir Putin faces international pressure over Ukraine and a failing economy, unofficial domestic groups are rallying to his support. One such youth organization, CET, or Network, uses creative multimedia to appeal to Russia's urban youth with patriotic propaganda. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports.
Video

Video Filmmakers Produce Hand-Painted Documentary on Van Gogh

The troubled life of the famous 19th century Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh has been told through many books and films, but never in the way a group of filmmakers now intends to do. "Loving Vincent " will be the first ever feature-length film made of animated hand-painted images, done in the style of the late artist. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Issues or Ethnicity? Question Divides Nigeria

As Nigeria goes to the polls next month, many expect the two top presidential contenders to gain much of their support from constituencies organized along ethnic or religious lines. But are faith and regional blocs really what political power in Nigeria is about? Chris Stein reports.
Video

Video Rock-Consuming Organisms Alter Views of Life Processes

Scientists thought they knew much about how life works, until a discovery more than two decades ago challenged conventional beliefs. Scientists found that there are organisms that breathe rocks. And it is only recently that the scientific community is accepting that there are organisms that could get energy out of rocks. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports.
Video

Video Paris Attacks Highlight Global Weapons Black Market

As law enforcement officials piece together how the Paris and Belgian terror cells carried out their recent attacks, questions are being asked about how they obtained military grade assault weapons - which are illegal in the European Union. As VOA's Jeff Swicord reports, experts say there is a very active worldwide black market for these weapons, and criminals and terrorists are buying.
Video

Video Activists Accuse China of Targeting Religious Freedom

The U.S.-based Chinese religious rights group ChinaAid says 2014 was the worst year for religious freedom in China since the end of the Cultural Revolution. As Ye Fan reports, activists say Beijing has been tightening religious controls ever since Chinese leader Xi Jinping came to office. Hu Wei narrates.
Video

Video Theologians Cast Doubt on Morality of Drone Strikes

In 2006, stirred by photos of U.S. soldiers mistreating Iraqi prisoners, a group of American faith leaders and academics launched the National Religious Campaign Against Torture. It played an important role in getting Congress to investigate, and the president to ban, torture. VOA's Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Former Sudan 'Lost Boy' Becomes Chess Master in NYC

In the mid-1980’s, thousands of Sudanese boys escaped the country's civil war by walking for weeks, then months and finally for more than a year, up to 1,500 kilometers across three countries. The so-called Lost Boys of the Sudan had little time for games. But one of them later mastered the game of chess, and now teaches it to children in the New York area. VOA’s Bernard Shusman in New York has his story.
Video

Video NASA Monitors Earth’s Vital Signs From Space

The U.S. space agency, NASA, is wrapping up its busiest 12-month period in more than a decade, with three missions launched in 2014 and two this month, one in early January and the fifth scheduled for January 29. As VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports, the instruments being lifted into orbit are focused on Earth’s vital life support systems and how they are responding to a warmer planet.

Circumventing Censorship

An Internet Primer for Healthy Web Habits

As surveillance and censoring technologies advance, so, too, do new tools for your computer or mobile device that help protect your privacy and break through Internet censorship.
More

All About America

AppleAndroid