| By Rob Reynolds in Chicago |
Barack Obama, the US president-elect, is stepping into a yawning power vacuum in Washington DC in an unprecedented effort to restore confidence in the financial system.
"The truth is, we don't have a minute to waste," Obama has said.
"Right now, our economy is trapped in a vicious cycle: The turmoil on Wall Street means a new round of belt-tightening for families and businesses on Main Street – and as folks produce less and consume less, that just deepens the problems in our financial markets."
Obama said the economy needs a "jolt" - a whopping stimulus package to put people back to work, fix the crumbling public infrastructure and develop clean energy sources.
What he might have added is that the current president needs a jolt to wake him from his irresponsible slumber.