Optimism Expressed on Obama's Plans
Some local political leaders from both sides of the aisle are optimistic about President Barack Obama's new administration.
Brian Deaton, chairman of the Moore County Democratic Party, called Tuesday a "great day for the country" and credited President Obama's ability to bring people together as a key asset for getting things done early on.
"I'm very hopeful about the direction he has set," he said. "Obama's very much a guy who's about making teams. I think his presidency will reflect that."
Deaton said he was confident in Obama's ability to turn around the economy and improve international affairs. He also said that it is important for everyone to respond to Obama's call for more personal responsibility.
"I think he has put out a challenge to assume responsibility for making our community and neighborhoods better," he said.
George Little, a longtime Republican activist and former gubernatorial candidate, said that the president must take swift action to stabilize the economy and straighten out Wall Street, which has been the victim of corporate greed.
"We're in a tough economic downturn, but it's not going to happen overnight," he said. "He has to stimulate [the economy] immediately. But it's going to take a long time to clean out [Wall Street]."
Little said it is critical for Obama to capitalize on the widespread popularity and support he is enjoying at the moment. He said that popularity usually wanes as time marches on, making it even more important to get Congress on board while he has the chance.
"He has the opportunity to do some things, and now is the time to do it," he said. "The biggest thing is the Congress and getting them to do things."
Neither Deaton nor Little anticipated petty political fights getting in the way of the president's agenda. Both said that the times dictate a bipartisan effort, especially with respect to rescuing the struggling economy.
"It's time for everybody to get on board and focus on the 'big marbles,'" Deaton said.
He said he believes that no one wants to be on the wrong side.
"I think there's a recognition by the majority of the GOP of the need to move forward," he said. "I think the Republicans in Congress will get in tune with that."
Little thinks the GOP has put the election behind it. He said people vote with their pocketbooks, and there was really nothing Republican presidential nominee John McCain could do to turn the tide once the economy tanked.
"We have to move on," he said. "The GOP will be back."
Little said that having the two parties trade power every now and then is actually a good thing.
"I think the best governments are the ones that alternate," he said.
Little said he wished Obama well.
"I'm optimistic," he said. "I hope he does well. If he does well, the country does well."
Contact John Krahnert III at 693-2473 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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