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Obama Gives Testy Response To CNN's Ed Henry

Newsday: Ed Henry of CNN asked in a two-part question why Andrew Cuomo, New York's attorney general, took quicker action on the AIG bonuses than did Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, despite Obama's expressions of anger about the payouts. Henry then also asked if Obama was concerned about saddling his daughters and the next president with a big fiscal mess.

"Of course I do, Ed," Obama replied. "Which is why we're doing everything we can to reduce that deficit. . . . This is hard," he added, given the deficit he inherited. Obama continued for some time in that vein, citing the need to reduce health-care costs.

The first part unanswered, Henry returned to asking why, while the action seemed to be coming from New York's AG office, Obama waited days to register concern. That elicited the slightest of smiles from the new president.

"It took us a couple of days because I like to know what I'm talking about before I speak," he replied. What sounded like "Eh?" from the president followed, and there were some chortles in the room before Obama called on the next questioner.

Newsday: Interpreting political messages harder in a crisis

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