markets tumbled. But for many of you – the people I've met in town
halls, backyards and diners across America – our troubled economy
isn't news. 600,000 Americans have lost their jobs since January.
Paychecks are flat and home values are falling. It's hard to pay for
gas and groceries and if you put it on a credit card they've probably
raised your rates. You're paying more than ever for health insurance
that covers less and less.
"This isn't just a string of bad luck. The truth is that while you've
been living up to your responsibilities Washington has not. That's why
we need change. Real change. This is no ordinary time and it shouldn't
be an ordinary election. But much of this campaign has been consumed
by petty attacks and distractions that have nothing to do with you or
how we get America back on track.
"Here's what I believe we need to do. Reform our tax system to give a
$1,000 tax break to the middle class instead of showering more on oil
companies and corporations that outsource our jobs. End the 'anything
goes' culture on Wall Street with real regulation that protects your
investments and pensions. Fast track a plan for energy
'made-in-America' that will free us from our dependence on mid-east
oil in 10 years and put millions of Americans to work. Crack down on
lobbyists – once and for all — so their back-room deal-making no
longer drowns out the voices of the middle class and undermines our
common interests as Americans.
"And yes, bring a responsible end to this war in Iraq so we stop
spending billions each month rebuilding their country when we should
be rebuilding ours. Doing these things won't be easy. But we're
Americans. We've met tough challenges before. And we can again. I'm
Barack Obama. I hope you'll read my economic plan. I approved this
message because bitter, partisan fights and outworn ideas of the left
and the right won't solve the problems we face today. But a new spirit
of unity and shared responsibility will."