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Politicians React To The Occupy Wall Street Movement

The Huffington Post     First Posted: 10/17/2011 5:38 pm   Updated: 03/15/2012 12:16 pm

The Occupy Wall Street protests started in mid-September in New York City with a hashtag and few dozen demonstrators camped out near the New York Stock Exchange. Since then the movement has spread to hundreds of cities across the United States and countries on every continent.

The rapid spread and ubiquitous media coverage has launched the Occupy protests to the forefront of American politics, garnering reactions from the president and the Republican candidates vying for the White House. Politicians on both sides of the aisle have weighted in all over the board. Critics have labelled demonstrators as un-American, dangerous mobs, while sympathizers stand in solidarity.

Though some political leaders have attempted to use the people's frustrations for their own political gain, protesters by-and-large blame both major parties for the policies and political gridlock they say protects corporate America at the expense of the middle class and poor.

Check out what our political leaders are saying and vote on what you think is the most appropriate response:

Barack Obama
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Speaking at a press conference Oct. 6 to urge congress to pass his jobs bill, President Barack Obama weighed in on the Occupy Wall Street movement, saying the protests express the frustrations of the American people.

"We had the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression, huge collateral damage all throughout the country ... and yet you're still seeing some of the same folks who acted irresponsibly trying to fight efforts to crack down on the abusive practices that got us into this in the first place," the president told reporters. "The protesters are giving voice to a more broad-based frustration with how our finance sector works ... The American people understand that not everybody's been following the rules."

In an interview with ABC on Oct. 18, Obama said the Occupy Wall Street protests aren't that different than some Tea Party protests.

"Both on the left and the right, I think people feel separated from their government," said the president. "They feel that their institutions aren't looking out for them."


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