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President says economy moving in the right direction

By WBFO News

Buffalo, NY – President Barack Obama says the recession isn't over for people who can't find jobs or pay their bills.

Mr. Obama told workers at Industrial Support, Inc. in Buffalo Thursday that economists might consider the recession to be technically over. But he said, "it's not a real recovery until people can feel it in their own lives."

Mr. Obama said the economy is moving in the right direction. But he said he will keep pushing a jobs agenda so that more people can find work, pay their bills and send their children to college.

Click the audio player above to hear the President's address now or use your podcasting software to download it to your computer or iPod.

The President arrived on Air Force One around 12:30pm at Buffalo Niagara International Airport. He was greeted by Mayor Byron Brown and House members Louise Slaughter and Brian Higgins.

The White House did confirm the President had a brief private meeting with family members of Flight 3407 victims on the airport grounds. He thanked them for their efforts to boost aviation safety.

"The president thanked them for everything they have done to move these safety standards forward," said White House spokesman Bill Burton. "Because of their efforts, a lot of progress has been made."

Burton said the meeting with 10 family members lasted about 10 minutes.

"It was a somber meeting," he said. "There were some tears."

From there, Mr. Obama went to Duff's on Dick Road for lunch. He chatted with surprised patrons after placing his order for five regular and five extra crispy.

Louann Haley of Chaffee greeted Obama with the words: "You're a hottie with a smokin' little body."

Obama's response: he hugged her.

About 100 people were at Duff's when the president arrived, and he greeted the surprised patrons with handshakes and hugs.

Mr. Obama then headed to Industrial Support for his address.

Hundreds of people lined the streets along the way to cheer the president's motorcade.

President Obama had his share of fun at Industrial Support Inc. -- some of it at the expense of Sheryl Gay Stolberg of the New York Times.

Mr. Obama ordered the reporter to board a mysterious circular hovercraft that the company makes. And he seemed to greatly enjoy it as Stolberg slid across the factory floor.

"It's a levitator. It's a hovercraft. It's for fun!" Mr. Obama said.

Stolberg didn't seem to enjoy her moment in the spotlight, but Mr. Obama consoled her by saying that her kids would enjoy seeing what happened to her.

"It's better than covering the Supreme Court," he said.

Air Force One departed Buffalo Niagara International Airport shortly before 4pm. The President is heading to New York City for a political fundraiser Thursday night.