CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- Preaching patience, President Barack Obama is telling voters at the Democratic National Convention that solving many of the nation’s toughest challenges will take a few years.
On the biggest stage of his re-election bid, Obama is dropping some tough love on voters, offering no fast solutions for a nation whose spirit has been sapped by economic insecurity.
“You didn’t elect me to tell you what you wanted to hear,” Obama said in excerpts of the speech he was delivering Thursday evening at the Democratic National Convention.
“You elected me,” he said, “to tell you the truth.”
The message was reminiscent of the night Obama won the presidency four years ago, when supporters reveled around him, but his words of change in America were tempered by caution about how long and hard the climb back to prosperity would be. It has indeed been that hard, so much that Obama is using his address this time to reach back to the Great Depression.
Calling his first term a mere start, Obama reached for Americans to join him in a “bold, persistent experimentation that Franklin Roosevelt pursued during the only crisis worse than this one.”
Obama says that Republicans are calling for tax cuts to solve every problem. While he supported breaks for the middle class, he says he doesn’t believe tax cuts for the wealthy would generate jobs or pay down the deficit.
Obama say job gains in the manufacturing sector over the last two years have reversed a decade of declines. He says the nation needs to invest in job training and education because it’s the gateway to a middle-class life.
On foreign policy, Obama accused Republican challenger Mitt Romney of wanting to take the nation back to what he called an era of blustering and blundering.
The substance of the new Obama deal consists of the economic pillars of Obama’s campaign: manufacturing, energy, education, national security and debt reduction.
More updates to follow.