Obama Urges Bailout Passage to ‘Prevent Catastrophe’

By Nitya

Oct 1, 2008 12:45pm

ABC News’ Sunlen Miller Reports: Senator Obama, at a rally before almost 15,000 people in Wisconsin, admitted the emergency economic bailout plan wasn’t perfect but urged Congress to pass the bill in order to prevent a financial catastrophe.

"This plan is not perfect," Obama admitted at the rally in LaCrosse, "Democrats and Republicans in Congress have legitimate concerns about it. I know many Americans share these concerns. But it is clear that this is what we must do right now to prevent a crisis from turning into a catastrophe."

After the rally, Senator Obama is flying back to DC. He told the gathered crowd he intends to cast his vote for the bill before the Senate today. The Obama campaign says that he has spoken to congressional leaders, government leaders and rank-and-file leaders of Congress on the phone today about the vote.

"I’ve been reaching out to leaders in both parties to do whatever I can to help pass this plan," Obama said, "I’ll be flying back to Washington today to cast my vote to safeguard the American economy."

Yesterday Obama proposed an FDIC hike, one that he says he’s pleased will be in the legislation the Senate will be voting on tonight in DC in addition to the other four taxpayer protection principles.

The bailout bill suffered a surprising defeat on Monday and Senator Obama had a simple message for those who opposed it: now is the time to act, even if the bill may not be perfect or popular.

"To the Democrats and Republicans who have opposed this plan, I say this– step up to the plate do what’s right for the country even if it’s not popular, because the time to act is now."

While Sen. John McCain’s name was absent form Obama’s last speech – today Obama reinvigorated part of his stump speech on taxes to draw comparisons with his Republican rival.

"I want everybody to know the differences between myself and Sen. McCain on this campaign. I will begin by reforming our tax code so that it doesn’t reward the lobbyists who wrote it, but the American workers and small businesses who deserve it," Obama said.

Obama said not to believe the ads that were coming for the "other side" saying that he intends to raise taxes.

And perhaps sending a sign to Gov Sarah Palin that she -  as "Joe Six Pack" – doesn’t have a corner on the beer-drinking market, Obama joked that since Oktoberfest was going on in LaCrosse that maybe he’d join in.

"Let me call my campaign staff and see if I can have a pint with you."

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