News / Europe

Obama Heads to G20 With US Fiscal Woes in Tow

President Obama walks to the White House Rose Garden, Oct. 20, 2011 (file photo).
President Obama walks to the White House Rose Garden, Oct. 20, 2011 (file photo).

As President Barack Obama welcomes this week's European debt-relief agreement, the White House says he will go to the G20 summit in France able to point to some progress in fixing the U.S. fiscal situation.

In reacting to the European deal, Obama said the U.S. looks forward to its "full development and rapid implementation" as Europe and the U.S. work together to sustain recovery and put people back to work.

At a press briefing, White House Press Secretary Jay Carney was asked if Obama's difficulties working with Republicans would undermine his authority to lecture European leaders or press them about the speed with which their deal moves forward.

Carney acknowledged "gridlock" with Republicans on the president's $447 billion jobs bill, and concerns about the ability of a bipartisan congressional committee to achieve a target of at least $1.2 trillion in additional spending cuts.

But Carney said the president will be able to tell G20 leaders that he continues to push Congress to act.

"The president's message to the Europeans and broadly to all the members of the G20 is that we need to work individually as countries and collectively together to ensure that we sustain and continue the global economic recovery and to put our people broadly speaking back to work," he said.

Negotiations in the congressional "supercommittee" are intensifying as a November 23rd deadline approaches for the 12-member panel to submit recommendations.

Obama has called for spending cuts even deeper than the $1.2 trillion target, but says they must deal in a balanced way with long-term deficit and debt and not harm the middle class.

However, the White House and Republicans continue to disagree on the question of taxes and the president's call for wealthier Americans to pay more to support deficit-reduction measures.

On Capitol Hill, Republican House Speaker John Boehner reacted to a Democratic proposal for $1.3 trillion in revenue.

"I don't think it's a reasonable number," said the speaker.

But Carney insisted that revenues must be part of any final deal.

"What isn't the right answer is to rule out entirely, to take off the table, revenues," said Carney.

House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi addressed the importance that decisions made in Washington have for global economic confidence.

"The world is not waiting," Pelosi said. "The world is watching to see what we do, but events will overtake us if we do not play our leadership role in the world."

Prior summits

At previous G20 and G8 summits, Obama has been able to cite financial system reforms enacted under his administration to demonstrate to other world leaders that the U.S. is working to stabilize its fiscal situation.

However, next week's summit will take place amid ongoing "Occupy Wall Street" demonstrations across the United States, in which people are protesting high unemployment, economic inequalities, and what they call corporate greed.

The president spoke about the protests, which have drawn attention overseas.

"The protesters are giving voice to a more broad-based frustration about how our financial system works," he said during his press conference on October 6th.

As he awaits the upcoming deficit-reduction decision by the supercommittee, Obama also continues to press lawmakers on legislation he says would create 1.9 million jobs.

Earlier this month, his American Jobs Act failed to obtain the 60 votes needed for passage in the Senate, with all Republicans voting against it. Congress earlier did approve free-trade agreements the president says will help the economy.

Facing continuing Republican opposition to his overall economic policies, Obama has resorted to executive orders not requiring congressional approval, to offer Americans financial relief, in areas such as mortgage refinancing and college loans.

Though the president got some good news about the economy -- third quarter economic growth of 2.5 percent -- Carney said this was "absolutely not good enough" to significantly effect employment.

You May Like

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

Judge Declares Washington DC Ban on Public Handguns Unconstitutional

Ruling overturns capital city's prohibition on carrying guns in public More

Pricey Hepatitis C Drug Draws Criticism

Activists are using the International AIDS Conference to criticize drug companies for charging high prices for life-saving therapies 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.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid