Bloomberg News

Obama Says U.S. Can Set Own Destiny in Thanksgiving Message

November 24, 2011

Nov. 24 (Bloomberg) -- President Barack Obama said Thanksgiving this year will be “more difficult than most” for many Americans because of economic challenges. He called on “each of us to do our part” to help the nation return to prosperity.

“No matter how tough things are right now, we still give thanks for that most American of blessings, the chance to determine our own destiny,” Obama said in his weekly radio and Internet address, timed for the Thanksgiving holiday in the U.S.

The president said the nation can overcome its challenges despite “all the partisanship and gridlock here in Washington.”

“The problems we face didn’t develop overnight, and we won’t solve them overnight,” Obama said. “But we will solve them. All it takes is for each of us to do our part.”

Obama also thanked U.S. troops serving overseas and Americans volunteering in soup kitchens and shelters. Obama and his wife and daughters yesterday participated in a program by the Capital Area Food Bank to prepare bags of food for local families in need.

The president’s address was delivered days after a special bipartisan congressional panel failed to reach agreement by a Nov. 23 deadline on a plan to cut the nation’s long-term deficit. That is set to trigger $1.2 trillion in automatic cuts in government spending beginning in 2013.

The collapse of the debt talks comes as the U.S. recovery remains sluggish and concerns grow that turmoil in European bond markets is threatening the global economy. The Standard & Poor’s 500 Index lost 2.2 percent to 1,161.79 at 4 p.m. yesterday in New York, extending its November decline to 7.3 percent.

Republican Address

Representative Sandy Adams of Florida, in the Republican radio and Internet response, also praised U.S. troops and called on politicians to come together to address economic challenges.

“In our prayers we include those less fortunate, especially the millions of our fellow citizens who are out of work,” Adams said.

“Central to the legacy we have inherited is an economy that promotes opportunity and entrepreneurship, and it is our duty to pass it on,” she said. “Together, we can and should find common ground to empower small businesses and remove government barriers that make it harder to create jobs."

--With assistance from Sabrina Siddiqui in Washington. Editors: Joe Sobczyk, Laurie Asseo

To contact the reporter on this story: Margaret Talev in Washington at mtalev@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Mark Silva at msilva34@bloomberg.net.


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