Notable Quotes from the President

The calendar has flipped to December, and the next presidential election is less than a year away. What better time to take a peek back at some of President Obama's more memorable quotes about the economy and the country:

“I do think at a certain point you've made enough money.”— April 2010

"Our kids are going to be fine. And I always tell Malia and Sasha, look, you guys, I don't worry about you. I mean, I worry the way parents worry, but they’re on a path that is going to be successful, even if the country as a whole is not successful.” — November 2011

“But we've been a little bit lazy, I think, over the last couple of decades. We've kind of taken for granted — well, people will want to come here and we aren't out there hungry, selling America and trying to attract new business into America.” — President to CEOs at Asian-Pacific Economic Cooperation conference, November 2011

"We've lost our ambition, our -- our imagination, and -- and -- our willingness to do the things that built the Golden Gate Bridge and Hoover Dam and unleashed all the potential in this country.” — October 2011

"We can't drive our SUVs and eat as much as we want and keep our homes on 72 degrees at all times...and then just expect that other countries are going to say OK.” — May 2008

“We reward people a lot for being rich, for being famous, for being cute, for being thin… one of the values I think we need to instill in our country, in our children, is a sense of ‘usefulness’, in other words, are we useful, are we making other peoples’ lives a little bit better?" — October 2006

“The American people are a decent people. Now they get confused sometimes. You know, they listen to the wrong talk radio shows or watch the wrong TV networks..but they’re, they’re basically decent, they’re basically sound." — September 2008

“I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment when we began to provide care for the sick and good jobs to the jobless; this was the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal." — June 2008

“UPS and FedEx are doing just fine, right? It's the Post Office that's always having problems." – On why Americans should trust government to provide health care, a point which undermines the argument; August 2009

“Let’s make sure that we define the well-off, so that we’re not hitting the middle class. I generally define well-off as people who are making $250,000 dollars a year or more.” — July 2011

“That’s why the American Recovery & Reinvestment Plan won’t just throw money at our problems, we’ll invest in what works.” — January 2009, before green energy companies like Solyndra got federal money and failed.

“When George Bush came into office, we had surpluses. And now we have half-a-trillion-dollar deficit annually. When George Bush came into office, our national debt was around $5 trillion.   It’s now over $10 trillion. We’ve almost doubled it.” — October 2008, before $4.5 trillion was added in new federal debt on his watch.

"Our stimulus plan will likely save or create three to four million jobs, 90% of these jobs will be created in the private sector." — January 2009

"In America, there's a failure to appreciate Europe‘s leading role in the world. Instead of celebrating your dynamic union and seeking to partner with you to meet common challenges, there have been times where America has shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive. But in Europe, there is an anti-Americanism that is at once casual but can also be insidious. Instead of recognizing the good that America so often does in the world, there have been times where Europeans choose to blame America for much of what's bad." — April 2009

"When you rush these budgets that are a foot high and nobody has any idea what's in them and nobody has read them…And it gets rushed through without any clear deliberation or debate then these kinds of things happen. And I think that this is in some ways what happened to the Patriot Act. I mean you remember that there was no real debate about that. It was so quick after 9/11 that it was introduced that people felt very intimidated by the administration.”  -- 2004 radio interview (In 2010 Democrats pushed through health and financial reform; elected officials admitted they had not read the bills.)

"It's not surprising, then, they get bitter, they cling to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren't like them or anti-immigrant sentiment or anti-trade sentiment as a way to explain their frustrations." — April 2008

"We're going to reshape America in a way that is less mean-spirited and more generous." — May 1990, quoted in article while attending Harvard Law School