Obama Announces Plans to Achieve Energy Independence

President Barack Obama is pushing stronger curbs on greenhouse gases, saying he wants to make it easier for states such as California to adopt tougher fuel-efficiency rules than the federal standard. Video by AP
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Monday, January 26, 2009; 11:06 AM

PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA: Thank you. Please, everybody be seated. Thank you so much. Thank you. Thank you, everybody. Thank you.

(APPLAUSE) Please, everybody be seated. Thank you.

Good morning.

AUDIENCE: Good morning.

OBAMA: Before I begin today's announcement, I want to say a few words about the deepening economic crisis that we've inherited and the need for urgent action.

Over the last few days, we've learned that Microsoft, Intel, United Airlines, Home Depot, Sprint Nextel and Caterpillar are each cutting thousands of jobs.

These are not just numbers on a page. As with the millions of jobs lost in 2008, these are working men and women whose families have been disrupted and whose dreams have been put on hold.

We owe it to each of them and to every single American to act with a sense of urgency and common purpose. We can't afford distractions and we cannot afford delays.

And that is why I look forward to signing an American recovery and reinvestment plan that will put millions of Americans to work and lay the foundation for stable growth that our economy needs and that our people demand.

These are extraordinary times, and it calls for swift and extraordinary action.

At a time of such great challenge for America, no single issue is as fundamental to our future as energy.

America's dependence on oil is one of the most serious threats that our nation has faced. It bankrolls dictators, pays for nuclear proliferation and funds both sides of our struggle against terrorism. It puts the American people at the mercy of shifting gas prices, stifles innovation, and sets back our ability to compete.

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