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  • Morning Bell: Press Conference Leaves Many Questions Unanswered

    Yesterday, President Barack Obama ended his months-long press conference drought and faced the White House press corps. Unfortunately for the American people, questions on some of the biggest issues facing the country remain unanswered.

    The 100-ton elephant in the room that wasn’t discussed? The economy. Though the President would like to revel in the country’s recent spate of moderate economic growth, all is not well in America. More than 8 percent of Americans remain unemployed — nearly 13 million in total. What’s more, only 63.7 percent of adult Americans are active in the labor force — the lowest amount since 1983. New jobs are being created, but not nearly enough. The current economic recovery is the slowest recovery in the post-war era. And four years after the recession started, the economy still has not replaced the jobs lost in the downturn.

    So given this economic backdrop, one might think the President would be asked what he plans to do to spur growth, or three years after his much-vaunted stimulus, why is the recovery so slow? Another key question: The President once stated that raising taxes is anathema to economic recovery, and yesterday credited lower taxes on the middle class for economic growth. But he is still proposing raising taxes by two trillion dollars. How will massive tax hikes on job creators spur job growth, if helping Americans get back to work is his goal? If you wanted to hear those questions on the economy answered, you were sorely disappointed.

    On a related subject, America passed a significant milestone since the President’s last press conference. It has now been well over 1,000 days since the Senate passed a budget, and meanwhile, according to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, the President will not offer a plan to reform unsustainable entitlement programs. What does the President plan to do about it? The subject was not raised yesterday.

    Fox News’ Ed Henry did raise an important question on the President’s position on gas prices — one of the ten questions that Heritage hoped Obama would be made to answer.

    Henry asked, “Your critics will say on Capitol Hill that you want gas prices to go higher because you have said before, that will wean the American people off fossil fuels, onto renewable fuels. How do you respond to that?” While not denying that rising oil prices supports his long-term energy agenda, the President cited electoral politics as a reason he wouldn’t want gas prices to go higher this year, and claimed there’s “no silver bullet” to solve the problem. What the President didn’t address, though, is his decision to block the Keystone XL pipeline, the regulatory hurdles to more drilling and refining in the United States, and Energy Secretary Steven Chu’s insistence that it’s not his job to make gas prices more affordable.

    A significant portion of the press conference yesterday was devoted to the issue of Iran and the United States’ relationship with Israel — certainly an important issue given Iran’s desperate pursuit of nuclear weapons. There were vital specifics on the issue he was not pressed on. Namely, does he regret his Administration’s hands-off approach to the Iranian Green Revolution? How can he answer for three years of failed efforts to engage with the likes of Syria and Iran, given that both are continuing to flout the international community? Why, if the President is a friend to Israel, is he pressing America’s ally to negotiate with a Palestinian authority that tolerates Hamas — a terrorist organization dedicated to the destruction of Israel? And why, given these significant threats in the Middle East — and indeed around the world — is the President slashing military spending and undermining America’s ability to defend itself?

    The final seminal issue that totally fell by the wayside was Obamacare’s assault on religious freedom. Under the President’s health care law, the White House mandates that virtually all religious employers, with the exception of churches, provide health care coverage for contraception — including abortion-inducing drugs — thereby trampling upon their constitutionally guaranteed free exercise of religion. Though the issue was discussed in the context of political rhetoric, the underlying question that brought this debate to the fore was ignored: Where in the Constitution does the President find the authority to issue a mandate that violates the conscience of religious organizations?

    These are all vital questions that have vast implications for America’s fiscal future, its national security, and the very integrity of the rights protected under the Constitution. They are fundamental questions of the role of the federal government, the President’s ability to offer solutions to the country’s crushing fiscal crisis, and his willingness to stand by our allies in defense of their right to exist. Unfortunately, America must wait for these questions to be answered.

    Click here to view this post in Spanish at Libertad.org.

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    34 Responses to Morning Bell: Press Conference Leaves Many Questions Unanswered

    1. Gary says:

      My suggested 3-step plan the President could employ to make things better for now:
      Step One: Resign
      Step Two: Biden resign
      Step Three: Give the reigns to the Speaker

    2. The main stream media give Obama ANOTHER pass. Maybe they should register as lobbyists.

    3. RogCol says:

      The Liar-in-Chief takes credit for the " inheritance" regarding the benefits of the Bush energy initiatives that have been successful. Not so much when it comes for the economy. Most gains on the fossil fuel front are from the state and private lands drilling. After over three years of incompetent leadership and a declining economy, its time to replace this guy before the final tipping point that takes us further down the path of Greece's demise.

    4. Dan Noxon says:

      Sad to see that even Heritage allows the Left to continue with the 8 percent unemployment lie.

    5. Mary......WI says:

      As long as the mainstream media continues to NOT report the failures of Obama, the disinterested, lazy voters in this country will re-elect this man and this country will continue on the path to socialism? communism? Now freedom from religion has been attacked and I see no end in sight as Obama slowly "transforms" this country. Please WAKE UP America!

    6. Whicket Williams says:

      He is doing as his Masters orders. You all know he is a post turtle. Everybody with a brain, that is.

    7. Shirley says:

      I would like to see pressure brought to bear on Republican leadership in the House. Lamar Smith introduced H.R.2885, The Legal Workforce Act. It has gone through Judicial and been approved but Cantor & Boehner won't bring it to the floor for a vote.

      74 congressmen have signed on. That should be enough to bring it to the floor. Some congressmen get pretty vague when asked about why their name is not listed as a co-sponer. It goes something like this: well I agree but I'm afraid it would hinder the hiring process, not really accurate…

      Not so, says USCIS. There website claims 96% accuracy with the additional 4% usually turns out to be Identity Theft.
      http://goo.gl/G8pGy

      According to NumbersUSA there are between 7-8 million NON-Ag jobs being held by Illegal Aliens. If those jobs could be opened up for Americans it would help the economy and the unemployment rate.

    8. LETTTER TO EDITOR
      Your ed-op on the Deficit is correct.
      You covered one side of the coin-Spending—the other side is Revenue.
      Since 1980, we have borrowed 14,000 Billion. It is due, partly, to the lack of taxes on wealth
      and higher incomes. The tax book has been a Christmas Tree for loading goodies for the
      upper incomes. The Corporate top tax rate is the infamous 35%, however, in 2011 they paid a `12.1% tax rate(after deductions). The top 50% incomes got 87% of all individual income and paid a 13.65% tax rate (after deductions) in 2010. We have a Total National Income of 14,000 billion and paid 2303 in federal taxes. A 16.43% Tax Rate(after deductions).

    9. PART 2 LETTER TO ED

      In 1980, we had 10 Billionaires, in 1989 we had 51 and now hundreds that profited from low taxes paid. The tax rates are high but tax paid is low. I agree we need to burn the tax book and start anew. A progressive Flat tax by group is simple and will allow us to get the necessary revenue (+ cut spending especially on Medicare and Pentagon) to balance our budget and pay down the horrid debt. In the OECD nations we rank #2 as Least Taxed. We rank #2 in least tax on corporations. We rank #4 on Inequality.
      Clarence Swinney

    10. RWHinkle says:

      The Nazi propaganda machine had a compliant media as well. Look where that ended. When are we going to break this lack of accountability that this President has? When are we going to recognize that we as a country are in extreme peril? This whole issue about Rush Limbaugh is a distraction from real concerns. I am a Rush fan, but the left and this President created this false issue and has made a mockery of the lack of critical concern by the media. Why is this being allowed to happen?

    11. James Cunningham says:

      The 100 ton elephant in the room was the lack of courage displayed by the press corps to ask the difficult questions. Hand picking his favorite reporters to toss pablum is not a "press conference"!

    12. sdfultz says:

      Who are these mythical Job creators?
      We're exporting more oil than ever, why aren't gas prices lower?
      Since when is it our concern to be the police of the world, Israel has to step up, Hamas or not!

      I have watched every GOP debate and have found no candidate to answer the very questions you ask here, So what are the American people to do, Stay the course and ride the slow recovery or bail and switch to one of the current candidates who have not answered these very questions, that are great questions.

    13. JIM says:

      Would we expect any less from Obumbler? His usual shuck and jive junk that doesn't amount to a hill of beans when the dust clears.

    14. The Heritage Foundation is a bulwark for this country as constitutional watchdogs. God bless them !

    15. Jim Schmitt says:

      I hope somebody at Heritage places these 10 questions in front of whoever the Republican candidate might be. I hope we can liven up the FOX debate, as they seem to be the only media connection interested in reporting the truth.

    16. What is he talking about?
      It's ridiculous to think the president has nothing to do with escalating prices. To say it is not his job to bring down the prices, but it is his job to wean us from using so much. Maybe he refuses to take the blame for higher prices but when it effects our lives it is his responsibility. Yes, I'm talking about the price of groceries such as diary products that have to be increased because of the cost of delivery. Do you suppose he will suggest we use milk weed in place of milk like he suggested algae in place of gasoline? The idea is certainly just as far fetched. Those who scoff at the increase in prices, should contemplate the reason for all increases in costs. The next time you spend a hundred dollars at the grocery store and carry it out in a small plastic bag, you will understand the reason could be the result of an increase in production and delivery costs or a decrease in the value of the dollar. Take your pick, President Obama is a the helm.
      Frank E. Vincent

    17. Shelley Crompton says:

      The entitlement reform? Before taking away money from the poor, sick and elderly how about trimming the amount of money congress gets blows on all their perks and expense accounts. That's what is really out of control. They need to live their daily lives like the rest of us. If they did, maybe they could relate a little better to the rest of the country, it would set a good example, and it would certainly help the US debt.

    18. B.J. Campbell says:

      It's too bad Ed Henry didn't ask that crucial question of where in the Constitution did Obama find the
      right to mandate church disbursement of free contraception devices. He has thrown the Constitution
      under the bus. When we will we ever "vet" Obama?

    19. PND says:

      Where in the Constitution is the president given the authority to mandate anything to private individuals?

      • ARR says:

        Doesn't the President take an oath to "preserve, protect and defend " the Constitution? It doesn't appear that he is upholding his oath.

    20. JB07652 says:

      Bush has yet to tour the tornado damage!!!

    21. For My Liberty says:

      Good questions, unfortunately he will not answer any of them because it will bring to light his belief and agenda to turn America into a socialist country. Would not matter anyway because every time he opens his mouth he is lying.

    22. toledofan says:

      This wasn't a Press Conference it was nothing more than another PR event. The mainsteam media is so in the bag for Obama that they will never hold his feet to the fire, ask tough questions or even prod him so he can't dodge the issues as easily. Yesterday was a nothing; it wasn't even a good softball game.

    23. Dr. LJA says:

      Very sad. It's impossible to enumerate all of the problems with the Obama presidency. Given that this is actually impossible in that the list is infinite, I cannot understand how there are still so many "citizens" of this still great country (at least for a while longer I hope) that will turn around an vote again for the great Obamalbatros currently sitting in the White House.

      • edree says:

        Great point. When my liberal friends ask me for examples of his rotten administration, I hardly know where to begin, and forget so many examples.

    24. David White says:

      Obama could start tax and spending reform by getting rid of Air Force One and using modern internet or digital phone communication. Fox News can hold live interviews with five people at once so one President on a big screen would save the $500,000 an hour price tag it takes to support an AF1 junket. With all the trips he takes at our expense we would have saved several billion by now. I've talked to a dozen people who had cost saving ideas like this one that would easily start reducing our debt but we the sheep don't seem to mind being fleeced.

      • david p says:

        sorry – this was meant as a comment to the blog, not you, David White!

        I'm simply a computer bungler!

    25. Glen says:

      Yesterday was just a PR event. It was Super Tuesday and the spotlight was on the candidates. So he decided to have his First Press Conference of the year on the same day. This shows how childish he can be. (Ego) Worst part of his TV appearance was that he told us nothing new.

    26. Blair Franconia, NH says:

      Questions like Mr. President," "Is it true that your Energy Secretary, Stephen Chu, said in 2008, that we should allow gas prices to rise to the levels they are in Europe? Isn't true that you want gas prices to rise to European
      levels because you want to benefit your crony capitalists?"

    27. David Lind says:

      Don't forget those 2 buses he spent 1.1 million each to go around and sell his bogus stimulus package

      • Jeanne Stotler says:

        And to add insult to injury they wer imports, what a waste, like most of his brlliant ideas

    28. Bobbie says:

      Mr. President? Why do you hate Christians so much? Since you said America wasn't "a Christian nation anymore" why has America fallen to collapse? What "word" do you call America's nation now?

    29. Jeanne Stotler says:

      When is someone going to call OBama on the carpet or using goverment funds for campaigning, Oh I know he does it under other pretextes BUT we all know he is just afraid not to be somewhere with a camera everyday. We have a faily large house with 2 solarpanls and a windmill, while it lowers some our Elec. bill it, BHO thinking we can have enough solar panels, windmills etc to forgo Fossil fuel, he must be snorting something. He lies everytine he opens his mouth, he has an ego bigger than Texas and Alaska combined and the STUPID media plays along. Why is it that only after FOX news reports a story in it's intirity do ABC<NBC,abd CBS say anything, ten try and white wash it. He's leading us into WWIII by his refusal to do anything that might hurt IRAN's feelings, I agree with Pres. Bush, they are a big part of the Axis of Evil.

    30. Now I know why Obama says that the federal govt should do everything for the amererican people, because they assume we are as dumb as the white house on the ObamaCare budget! They can't do the math!!!

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