(NBC) - President Obama admits there's "no magic bullet" to jump-start the economy.
"If you don't have a job right now, it's a tough, tough situation," Obama said.
The economy is growing slower than the government thought. Home sales are down and nearly one in ten Americans remain without jobs. The President says Congress needs to act.
"We should be passing legislation that helps small businesses get credit," said Obama.
But that's on hold as lawmakers try to keep their jobs. Democrats up for re-election in November are being hammered on the economy and spending.
"We don't just need to stop spending so much, we need to stop spending so irrationally," House Minority Leader John Boehner said.
After saluting troops in Texas on Tuesday, Obama will mark the end of combat operations in Iraq with a primetime speech from the Oval Office.
That too becomes an economic issue. With fewer soldiers there, there's pressure to cut the defense budget that's doubled since 2001.