MOUNTAIN VIEW, California (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Monday the debt crisis in Europe was “scaring the world” and that leaders in the euro zone were not dealing with the issue quickly enough.
The recovery of the U.S. economy suffered setbacks this year due to problems around the world, Obama said, including the Arab Spring uprisings that drove up energy prices and worries about the financial health of European nations.
“They have not fully healed from the crisis back in 2007 and never fully dealt with all the challenges that their banking system faced. It is now being compounded with what is happening in Greece,” Obama said at a “town hall” public meeting in Mountain View, California.
“So they are going through a financial crisis that is scaring the world and they are trying to take responsible actions but those actions haven’t been quite as quick as they need to be.”
Obama, on the West Coast to raise funds for his re-election campaign in 2012, has seen his approval ratings hit by worries over persistently high unemployment above 9 percent and fears the United States could slide into another recession.
The Democratic president, who pushed through an $800 billion economic stimulus plan in 2009, has set out a new $447 billion plan to create jobs and cut taxes for small businesses but has faced fresh opposition from Republicans.
Additional reporting by Laura MacInnis; Writing by John O'Callaghan; Editing by Eric Walsh