Bush tries to reassure nation

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President Bush on Monday afternoon commented on the economy for the second time, after the stock market fell more than 800 points on fears that the U.S. crisis is spreading worldwide.

“People are just wondering, are these banks going to freeze up? And my answer is, we got a plan to deal with it,” Mr. Bush said, at the beginning of his speech on judges in Cincinnati.

As he did earlier in the day, Mr. Bush said that the $700 billion economic rescue plan to buy up bad debt from troubled financial institutions is not going to have an immediate impact.

“The plan is going to take time to implement,” Mr. Bush said. “We have been through tough times before, and we’re going to come through this just fine.”

Earlier Monday, after meeting with small business owners in San Antonio, Mr. Bush told reporters that “it’s going to take a while to restore confidence in the financial system.”

“But one thing people can be certain of is that the bill I signed is a big step toward solving this problem,” he said.

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