With nearly four years under President Barack Obama's reign, America's economic recovery is struggling to pick up speed and unemployment remains above an unhealthy 8%.
The Obama administration has repeatedly been harshly criticized for bailing out corporate businesses, for the massive national deficit and for the creation of the controversial healthcare bill dubbed Obamacare.
Yet, with just six weeks left before Americans head to the polls to cast their vote for the 45th president, President Obama has managed to eke out a slight lead.
In a mid-September interview with "60 Minutes," President Obama defended his term and said he and we need more time with him in office.
Here's what to expect if President Obama wins Election 2012.
President Obama on Jobs
Since the time President Obama took office, jobs have been the most pressing issue facing the country.
Under the president's helm, the U.S. has endured 43 months of unemployment stuck above a sickly 8%. Acknowledging the dire straits of the job market, the president told "60Minutes" that no one is more concerned about jobs than he is.
Recalling his JOBS Act, presented and shot down by Congress a year ago, the president said the plan was to put people back to work. But, he noted, Americans have never seen the full implementation of that plan.
On the scarce job creation, the elevated unemployment rate and the lack of job security, the president pointed out, "The month I was sworn into office, we were losing eight hundred thousand jobs a month. We ultimately would lose nine million jobs during the height of the Great Recession. We came in, made some tough decisions, everything from stabilizing the financial system to making sure that the auto industry survived, to making sure that we cut taxes for middle-class families so they had more money in the pockets, to helping states avoid massive layoffs of teachers and firefighters and police officers."
The president went on to say that we need to keep moving forward and to build upon the progress, and said he could do so with more time.
On Taxes and Regulations
In regards to taxes, President Obama maintains that he hasn't raised them.
He said taxes are "lower on families than they've been probably in the last fifty years," and taxes for middle-class families have been cut by an average of $3,600 for a typical family.
As for the scores of regulation that Team Romney claims President Obama has implemented while in office, he said, "I've issued fewer regulations than my predecessor George Bush did during that same period in office."
And commenting on the backlash received regarding the strict regulations put on banks and businesses, President Obama alleged, "Now I don't make any apologies for putting in place regulations to make sure banks don't make reckless bets and then expect taxpayers to bail them out. I don't make any apologies for regulating insurance companies, so that they can't drop a family's coverage, just when somebody in their family needs it most."
When asked about the ongoing housing crisis, and the criticism he's received for bailing out banks but not homeowners, President Obama assured that he has helped several millions of homeowners, but admitted the road ahead is still long.
Since modifying the housing market assistance program, the president said there has been a significant uptick in the number of people taking advantage of it, but more needs to – and will – be done in this area.
On the National Debt
Since the president entered the White House, the national debt has soared some 60%.
The president said he inherited the biggest deficit in U.S. history. The mushrooming deficit, he said, was ignited by two wars that weren't paid for; a consequence of tax cuts that weren't paid for; a prescription drug plan that was not paid for; and the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.
President Obama said that the only way to reduce the deficit in a balanced way is with spending cuts and entitlement reforms. He said Republicans have thwarted all of his efforts in this area, but he believes voters will support his efforts.
On Foreign Affairs
The interview highlighted domestic policy, but the president had his hands full of foreign affairs on the same day. The night before, an attack on the Libyan consulate killed the U.S. ambassador and three others.
On our national security, the president said the only pressure he feels is "simply to do what is right for the American people."
In a term marred by high unemployment, an ailing housing market, a stalled fiscal recovery, an enormous deficit and a gridlocked Congress, President Obama was quick to point to his successes.
"I said I'd end the war in Iraq. I did. I said that we'd go after Al Qaeda. They've been decimated in the FATA. That we'd go after bin Laden. He's gone. So I've executed my foreign policy. And it's one that the American people largely agree with," said the president.
As for what he wants to see during the next four years is to get re-elected and make sure that hard working people can succeed. He calls it "the bread and butter basics of making sure our economy works for our working people."
He said what he aims to present to the public at all times is a "vision of America in which everybody's got a shot, everybody's treated with respect and dignity in which the divides of race, faith, gender, sexual orientation, that those are not the determining factors, in terms of whether people succeed but instead it's how hard you work and are you trustworthy and are you responsible and …. do you look after your family and do you-do you love people and love this country?"
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