Tuesday, September 21, 2010

"Exhausted" voter puts President Obama on hot seat

A "deeply disappointed" supporter put President Obama on the grill yesterday at a town-hall meeting, telling him that he hasn't lived up to hopes, that she's grown exhausted defending him and that she is fearful about returning to the "hot dogs-and-beans era" of her life because he's not helping the financially strapped middle class.

"I've been told that I voted for a man who said he's going to change things in a meaningful way for the middle class. I'm one of those people, and I'm waiting, sir," Velma Hart told Obama.

"I'm waiting. I don't feel it yet," the mom and Army Reserve veteran continued.

"And I thought, while it wouldn't be in a great measure, I would feel it in some small measure."

Hart, the chief financial officer for the veterans group AMVETS, was among the roomful of businesspeople pressing Obama for answers at a televised town hall in Washington sponsored by CNBC.

Hart lives with her husband, Karlton, who works as a facilities administrator at DC's Verizon Center, and their two teenage daughters in suburban Maryland. Yesterday she said she feels their middle-class lifestyle slipping away.

"I'm also a mother. I'm a wife. I'm an American veteran, and I'm one of your middle-class Americans. And, quite frankly, I'm exhausted," she said.

"I'm exhausted of defending you, defending your administration, defending the mantle of change that I voted for, and deeply disappointed with where we are right now."

"I have two children in private school. The financial recession has taken an enormous toll on my family," Hart said.
"My husband and I have joked for years that we thought we were well beyond the hot dogs-and-beans era of our lives. But, quite frankly, it is starting to knock on our door and ring true that that might be where we are headed again."

Hart concluded, "Quite frankly, Mr. President, I need you to answer this honestly: Is this my new reality?"

Obama responded: "As I said before, times are tough for everybody. So, I understand your frustration."

He insisted that the policies he has already implemented, including more college scholarships and consumer protections against credit-card and mortgage companies, will help the Hart family.

Obama said Hart represented the "bedrock of America."

"The life you describe -- one of responsibility, looking after your family, contributing back to your community -- that's what we want to reward," Obama said.

Last night, Hart told The Post that she was not completely satisfied with Obama's answer.

She complained that he didn't say whether these tough times are a "new reality" or just temporary.
"He didn't answer that," she said. "That was the heart of my question. Like most Americans, fear is starting to take hold, anxiety is taking hold.


  1. Deep question indeed... "Is this our new reality?" I think what we have here is a President who not unlike many others in the past, promised the moon and stars to those who voted for him - and because of the terrible financial and economic condition the nation was in - many heard only his words and didn't think much about what would need to be done to actually bring us out of the recession and crisis. Now granted I totally NEVER put my faith in any man to turn things around and yet this is what many did and now they are left disillusioned with where we are today.

    Obama has to take on some of the blame here too. One, for promising that which he could not ever produce. (While he might think he can I can assure you he CANNOT turn water into wine or feed the masses with just one fish and a loaf of bread.) Believe me he knew that going into the election and then back peddled on those promises as the election came to an end. Yes he is well spoken but so too was the serpent in the garden of Eden. (I'm not calling Obama Satan or an Antichrist so please do not take what I say out of context.)

    Smooth words do not feed the hungry, clothes the homeless or put a shelter over the head of those who have lost their homes. What should have been done from the start was to make the banks accountable for their role in this mess and NOT reward them by giving them bailout funds. If the car companies had to claim bankruptcy in order to receive assistance so too should the banks of had to.

    Next, stimulus money should have gone to sectors of the country that would have been able to immediately produce jobs. Roads, bridges & tunnels projects, the revamping of the nations electrical grid & modification of fuel stations to accept new energy technologies, institution of green jobs such as in the solar and wind fields. If the US was going to put itself in hock for future generations there should be some benefit to the nation and it's citizens in the years to come. The US should have taken the opportunity to use the trillions of dollars to bring it up to speed and keep it as a world leader in innovation and invention. How about shoring up those borders North & South with a state-of-the-art wall? That certainly would have put people in the border states (and by people I mean US citizens only) to work and stimulated various industries at that. Instead we've spent and/or doled out the money and are now left with buyers remorse.

    For this Obama and his administration are at fault. For not thinking the game plan out and/or not playing ball the way he said he would. And for those of you who don't remember what I'm talking about it's by "reaching across the isle" and making inroads between the two parties.

    It's about time Obama is being confronted by those who are exhausted. Too bad he wasn't confronted when running for President but instead was given the Holy Grail and never asked a serious question that required forethought. I just can't help thinking that if he would have smiled the way he did when this woman said she was "exhausted in defending him" that I would have reached across the isle and given him a real good SLAP of reality!

  2. This woman spoke from the heart, I dont know if any of us could have put it better.
    Yes, frankly myself, my family and many of our friends and business associates feel the same as this woman does and if Obama does not make some good changes soon....then he is not the man for the job...simple as that and I am trying to express this as respectfully as this woman had portrayed