Team Obama Weighs Priorites Amid Obstacles

Economy could put other promises on back burner
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Nov 9, 2008 7:47 AM CST
President-elect Obama answers a question during a news conference in Chicago, Friday, Nov. 7, 2008.    (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
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(Newser) – Between the economic crisis and a host of campaign promises, Barack Obama faces major challenges—and his team is taking time now to sort through priorities for his presidency, the New York Times reports. The president-elect's top priority is the economy, he repeated yesterday in a radio address to the nation. But advisers wonder if Obama will be able to also deal with issues like energy independence, health care, and climate change along with his economic plan.

Economic trouble has already shifted Obama's direction on climate change, and could pose major hurdles in financing his health care and education reforms. As for Iraq, any wavering of stability there could hamper his 16-month withdrawal timetable. But armed with a Democratic Congress, he should be able to push through his middle-class tax cuts, observers predict. “Every president is tempted to take on too much,” said one Obama adviser. “On the other hand, an extraordinary president can do an awful lot."