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For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
April 7, 2008
President Bush Meets with Small and Mid-Size Business Owners to Discuss Economic Stimulus Package
1:46 P.M. EDT
THE PRESIDENT: I just had a fascinating discussion with fellow citizens who happen to be small business owners, people who run small businesses. And I'm talking about a variety of small businesses. We got a meat packer, an apple processor, we've got a grinder, a large equipment manufacturer, education man. We got a lot of folks from different backgrounds and different states, all of whom were talking about the effects of the pro-growth economic package that was passed by the Congress and how that package is causing them to make capital investments that they might not have made in the year 2008.
And that's important, because in times of economic uncertainty, we want people making investment, so when a person buys an apple press, somebody is going to have to manufacture that press. When somebody manufactures that press, it means there's more likely to be work and income.
And so I'm very pleased to have heard from the small business owners here that the package is going to cause them to make decisions that will help the recovery of this economic slowdown.
Now, having said that, they did share concerns with me. I understand those concerns, and I feel the same way. One, there's concern about the high price of fuel. People have to make a living, and they're driving their cars and their trucks -- and fuel is hurting people. And so I fully understand that not only are people worried about their homes, they're worried about the cost of fuel -- and one of the reasons why we got to keep taxes low.
As a matter of fact, one of the things that's going to happen with this pro-growth package is that not only is it going to affect small businesses like it's affected folks here, but 130 million families are going to get some money, their own money. And of course, the purpose of that is to help boost consumption. We're in a rough time right now; I'm confident we're going to come out of it. And when we do we're going to be a stronger -- stronger and better country.
Congress, of course, is contemplating different measures. And my only advice to them is, one, make sure you give the pro-growth package that was passed overwhelmingly a chance to work, see what the effects are. Secondly, anything they do should not hurt the economy. And thirdly, I, you know, I think we ought to, in terms of pro-growth packages, I think we ought to, again I repeat, give this one a chance to kick in. The experts tell me that this pro-growth package is going to add some -- you know, a percent, percent-and-a-half to the economy here in the latter part of this year. If that's the case, it's going to be an important part of recovering.
Anyway, long and short of it is, I thank you all for coming; very useful meeting. I thank you for being entrepreneurs. Thank you for working hard to provide for your families. Thank you for looking after your employees the way you do. Appreciate the fact that you're making investments in the year 2008 which will get this economy going.
END 1:49 P.M. EDT