Bush meets treasury secretary, Fed chief, says he’s working hard on financial turmoil

WASHINGTON (AP) âÄî Eager to show that he feels people’s pain, President Bush told the country Thursday his administration is working feverishly to calm turmoil in the financial markets. With reports swirling of possibly imminent new government action, the president met with his treasury secretary and the head of the Federal Reserve. Nothing was announced immediately after the 40-minute meeting at the White House, which included Securities and Exchange Commission Chairman Christopher Cox, along with Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke. White House spokesman Tony Fratto would not comment on whether any decisions were made at the session, or whether any announcements would be forthcoming later Thursday. News reports said Paulson was considering having the government create an entity to take over banks’ bad debt. “The president and his senior economic advisers had a very good discussion about the serious conditions in the financial markets,” Fratto said. Bush was supposed to spend the day in Alabama and Florida raising money for Republicans and talking energy policy. He canceled his trip and sent Vice President Dick Cheney to sub for him at the fundraisers to focus on the worst financial meltdown since the Great Depression.