President: Long and painful recession if Congress doesn't act

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President: Entire economy is in danger

WASHINGTON - Pressing urgently for a massive financial bailout, President Bush says the nation faces a "long and painful recession" if Congress fails to act. He says "our entire economy is in danger."

Speaking in dire terms, Bush pushed for a $700 billion government rescue plan during a prime-time address to the nation.

His move was aimed at explaining the package to the American public, but also to keep pressure on frustrated and angry lawmakers to work out a bipartisan deal fast.

Bush said the goal is to help the government buy up troubled assets so that credit can start flowing again and the economy will rebound.

He said the rescue is aimed at helping the country, not individual companies.