Newburyport Daily News
---- — To the Editor:
In this much too long Presidential election campaign, one question that frequently comes up is that old Reagan jab, are you better off now than you were four years ago. Let’s think about our nation four years ago and today.
First, let’s look at the economy. We had a young President who assumed office in the midst of the worst recession since the Great Depression. When he took office we were loosing 800,000 jobs a month. We have gained over 4 million new private sector jobs and are continuing to grow every month. When he took office, unemployment was about 10 %– it is now 7.8%: again, right direction. When the President assumed the office, the American auto industry was in serious trouble. An American icon almost disappeared. Restructuring of General Motors and Chrysler backed by Government loans have protected over 1 million jobs. A great American industry is now alive and well with a great future.
What about health care? When he took office 30 million of our fellow Americans had no health insurance: another problem solved with the Affordable Care Act, affectionately called Obama Care. The embarrassment of this nation not finding a way to provide health care for all of its citizens is finally over. Nobody has to worry about being denied insurance or having it cancelled due to pre-existing conditions. No-one will be told by his or her insurance company that they have reached a dollar cap on coverage. Young adults under 26 are now covered under their parents plan. The companies now have to spend more of the premium dollars they collect on health care rather than on advertising and excessive CEO salaries. Medicare recipients are saving hundreds of dollars in their Part D drug benefits. Medicare itself has had its solvency extended by 8 years without benefit reductions.
With respect to foreign policy, this President has exercised leadership while improving relations with our allies After what was becoming endless war, President Obama has brought combat operations in Iraq to an end and the troops are coming home. After 11 years of war in Afghanistan, we are moving in the right direction, namely out, in 2014. His leadership in the international community of nations has brought about the toughest sanctions ever, to tackle the critical issue of a nuclear-armed Iran. And, yes, Osama Bin Laden has been brought to justice.
When President Obama assumed the Presidency, the Dow Jones was at about 8,000. It is now about 13,000, a 60% increase !
Yes, we have come far in four years but we have the potential to go much further as a nation if we choose to continue going forward with President Obama.