Green shoots and leaves

Obama in Raleigh:

I don’t know whether you’ve seen the cover of the latest Newsweek magazine on the rack at the grocery store, but the cover says, “The Recession is Over.”

I bet you found that news a little startling. I know I did. Now, it’s true that we’ve stopped the freefall. The market is up and the financial system is no longer on the verge of collapse. We’re losing jobs at nearly half the rate we were when I took office six months ago.

So, we may be seeing the beginning of the end of the recession. But that’s little comfort if you’re one of the folks who have lost their job, and haven’t found another. Unemployment in North Carolina is over ten percent today. A lot of small businesses like Sara’s are still struggling with falling revenues and rising costs. Health care premiums, for example, are rising twice as fast as wages, and much more for small businesses – something I’ll address in a minute.

The defense of the stimulus, followed by a health care argument, has become the core White House message, and here’s the new health care case, shifted from cost to insecurity: "But what a lot of the chatter out there hasn’t focused on is the fact that if you’re an American who already has health insurance, the reform we’re proposing will provide you with more stability and security."

Full remarks after the jump.

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