What has surprised Barack Obama since he took office nearly two years ago? It shouldn’t come as a surprise, actually: it’s the 24/7 news culture. He told a Democratic National Committee rally last night he’s he’s surprised at how the media focuses on what’s happening “this minute,” as opposed to “what needs to happen over the course of months, years.”
The long view is a recurring theme for Mr. Obama. On the campaign trail in these last frantic weeks before the November midterms, he says the United States got itself into such a hole that’ll it’ll take a long time – longer than anyone would like he says – to get out.
“We have to adjust to new realities,” the President said.
But how long? One woman, “Maureen from New Jersey,” asked via Twitter “if it took us eight years (of George W. Bush) to get into this mess, won’t it take at least that long to get out?”
Even Obama called that a softball question. But without giving any specific time frame (how do you know exactly, when you’ve ‘gotten out?”), he said it will take a ”persistent effort” to build a clean energy economy, overhaul the education system and so forth.
Last night’s Obama rally, held on the nearby campus of George Washington University, is the latest in a White House effort to get young adults to the polls in November. A Pew survey says only 27% of young Democrats are interested in this election – in contrast to 39% of young Republicans.
The President: ”I really need you to get out on Nov. 2.”
As for today:
After his usual intelligence and economic briefings, Obama meets with college students and their families on the impact of the American Opportunity Tax Credit (AOTC) – part of last year’s stimulus program which gives families tax breaks for college tuition. After the meeting (the schedule says 5 minutes have been allotted for it), the President will comment in the Rose Garden.
The White House has also released more of Obama’s campaign schedule. Beyond Friday in Delaware, Saturday in Boston and Sunday in Ohio (where Mrs. Obama will join in on their first joint campaign appearance since 2008), he’ll be in Portland, OR on Wednesday the 20th, Seattle and San Francisco on Thursday the 21st, Los Angeles and Las Vegas on Friday the 22d and in Minnesota on Saturday the 23d. He’ll come back to the White House for a day before beginning the campaign’s final week on Monday the 25th in Providence, RI.
The White House also says President and Mrs. Obama have requested absentee ballots; they’ll likely spend election night at the White House.
9:30AM Pool Call Time
10:30AM THE PRESIDENT receives the Presidential Daily Briefing
11:00AM THE PRESIDENT receives the Economic Daily Briefing
11:45AM THE PRESIDENT meets with senior advisors
1:45PM THE PRESIDENT meets with college students and their families on the impact of the American Opportunity Tax Credit
1:50PM THE PRESIDENT delivers a statement to the press
Open Press (Pre-set 12:50PM – Final Gather 1:20PM – North Doors of the Palm Room)
10:00AM Press Secretary Robert Gibbs will convene an off-camera gaggle in the Brady Press Briefing Room
TBD Briefing by Press Secretary Robert Gibbs