POLITICS: White House

Obama: 'I actually believe in the free market'

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,White House,Barack Obama,Ashe Schow

President Obama responded Tuesday to protestors calling him a "socialist" by saying, "I actually believe in the free market."

That statement was made as Obama addressed a crowd in Phoenix, Ariz., about his new plan to help the housing market. Phoenix was one of the hardest-hit areas during the housing crash, and Obama felt the need to claim he was for free markets while outlining the first of four principles that should govern housing reform.

"Private capital should take a bigger role in the mortgage market. I know that sounds confusing to folks who call me a 'socialist' -- I think I saw some posters there on the way in. But I actually believe in the free market," Obama said.

Obama followed up his claim by pointing to his favorite government program: Obamacare.

"But in the same way that what we did with health care was to set up clear rules for insurance companies to protect consumers, make it more affordable, but still built on the private marketplace, I believe that our housing system should operate where there's a limited government role and private lending should be the backbone of the housing market," Obama said.

And, as with health care, Obama offered a government solution to the housing market while simultaneously declaring his belief in the free market.

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