Obama, advisers scramble to reassure investors
President Barack Obama and his top economic advisors arrived on Capitol Hill Tuesday, defending the administration's budget proposal and the steps being taken to stabilize the hemorrhaging stock market.
"I am absolutely confident that credit is going to be flowing again, that businesses are going to start seeing opportunities for investment," Obama said one day after the Dow Jones industrial index dropped to its lowest level in nearly 12 years.
The president compared tracking the undulating stock market to monitoring political polls, saying that people who are closely following the daily fluctuations of the stocks are at risk of getting the long-term financial strategy wrong.
Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, from Larchmont, testified before Congress about the dire state of U.S. economy, saying President Obama has inherited "the worst fiscal situation in American history."
Lawmakers on Capitol Hill also grilled Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, demanding to know what the administration plans to do next and why the New York-based insurance giant AIG was given a fourth government loan for another $30 billion in rescue money.
Bernanke responded by saying that allowing AIG to fail is not an option.