Thursday, March 26, 2009
By Fred Lucas, Staff Writer
(CNSNews.com) - European Union President Mirek Topolanek told the European parliament Wednesday that Obama's economic policies were harmful to the U.S. economy and the global economy.
In response, the White House said it did not think the criticism would disrupt President Barack Obama’s meeting with European leaders next week.
“All these steps, these combinations and permanency, is the road to hell,” said Topolanek, who is also the president of the Czech Republic. “We need to read history books and the lessons of history, and the biggest success of the EU is the refusal to go this way.”
Topolanek cited the $787-billion stimulus package geared toward reviving the economy and the administration’s proposed $1-trillion plan to buy up toxic assets. The EU president’s rebuke came the week prior to the Group of 20 (G-20) meeting on April 2 in London.
“Americans will need liquidity to finance all their measures and they will balance this with the sale of their bonds,” Topolanek said. “But this will undermine the liquidity of the global financial market.”
European leaders from other countries have expressed concern about U.S. policies while Obama has called for every country to step up to get the economy working again. Topolanek’s comments were the strongest by any European leader.
The comments also come one day after the Czech parliament cast a “no confidence” vote against Topolanek, ousting him from office.
White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs dismissed Topolanek’s remark and said it would not complicate the G-20 meeting.
“The president looks forward to his first meeting with the EU as an opportunity to discuss issues of transatlantic cooperation,” Gibbs said. “We’re going to be in Prague. He looks forward to a deepening relationship with the Czech people.”
Gibbs also brought up the political problems facing Topolanek.
“From what I can tell, the speaker has some domestic political problems that might speak more to what he was talking about,” Gibbs said. “I think the Czech people and the American people can be assured that the president of the United States of America is going to do all that he can do within his power to get our economy moving against and to restore confidence in that economy.”