Donald Evans

Commerce Secretary Donald Evans was Thursday's guest. Here are excerpts from his remarks:

On whether the administration will act to lower gasoline prices before the Nov. 2 election:

"There are not any short-term fixes. This is a long lead-time industry that requires long- term planning."

On revised GDP numbers showing 4.4 percent growth in the first quarter:

"What I have consistently seen a pattern of, is [that] the revisions have been in the right direction. That, to me, just says the economy has got a lot of energy and it's got a lot of momentum."

On complaints by some senior Republicans that the president isn't accessible:

"The president is accessible. He is available. The president believes in listening to all points of view. That is how I have seen him operate for years."

On the need for better job training so employers can find workers with the right skills:

"We are going to continue to see the skills gap that we have in our country, and it worries me that it is growing."

On claims that American brand names have lost value overseas due to the war in Iraq:

"I don't accept your premise. It is also somewhat overstated, because when I ... talk to businesses that we work with around the world, they understand the strong relationship we have with them and their countries. I don't see an impact, quite frankly."

An expanded report is available at: http://blogs.csmonitor.com/cooks_capitol/

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