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Barack Obama

"The presidency of Barack Obama, elected in 2008 an..."

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by 226 Jurors

Barack Obama is the 44th and current President of the United States, the first African American to hold the office. Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, Obama is a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School, where he was president of the Harvard Law Review. He was a community organizer in Chicago before earning his law degree. He worked as a civil rights attorney in Chicago and taught constitutional law at the University of Chicago Law School from 1992 to 2004. He served three terms representing the 13th District in the Illinois Senate from 1997 to 2004, running unsuccessfully for the United States House of Representatives in 2000. [1]

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img Lucas Lynch posted a review

• 1/20/09 - Obama inaugurated as 44th president.

• 1/22/09 - Signs executive order announcing the closure of the Guantanamo Bay within a year.

• 1/23/09 - Orders the first two Predator drone airstrikes of his presidency.

• 2/3/09 - Two of Obama's cabinet nominees and several other choices for high level administration positions withdraw from consideration after various embarrassing revelations.

• 2/4/09 - Cancels 77 leases sold by the Bush administration to oil and gas companies, while letting only 39 leases stand.

• 2/17/09 - Signs into law the $787 billion Recovery and Reinvestment Act, a.k.a. the Stimulus.

• 2/17/09 - Deploys 17,000 additional troops to Afghanistan.

• 2/18/09 - GM and Chrysler ask for a second bailout loan. George W. Bush approved the first just 2 months earlier.

• 2/27/09 - Cancels leases for oil shale development on 1,900,000 acres of federal land in Colorado, Utah and Wyoming.

• 3/2/09 - Pledges $900 million in aid to the Gaza Strip and West Bank.

• 3/6/09 - Secretary of State Clinton gives a "reset" button to the President of Russia.

• 3/11/09 - Signs the Omnibus Appropriations Act of 2009, which, along with the stimulus and the other 2009 budget appropriations, comprise the biggest increase in spending in American history.

• 3/19/09 - Releases a video message to the Iranian people and government offering "a new beginning".

• 3/30/09 - Adds two million acres land in in California, Colorado, Idaho, Michigan, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Virginia, and West Virginia to the National Wilderness Preservation System.

• 4/3/09 - Makes one of many speeches in foreign countries that will become derided as the "Obama Apology Tour." In this one, in Strasbourg, France, Obama says "there have been times where America has shown arrogance and been dismissive, even derisive."

• 4/5/09 - Makes speech in the Czech Republic saying he will "seek the peace and security of a world without nuclear weapons" while recognizing right of developing nations to pursue nuclear power.

• 4/12/09 - Approves military action to free Richard Phillips, captured by pirates in the Maersk Alabama hijacking.

• 5/19/09 - Announces plan to require all cars and light trucks to have a fuel efficiency of at least 35.5 miles per gallon by 2016, in an attempt to reduce the United States' contributions to global warming.

• 5/26/09 - Nominates Sonia Sotomayor to replace retiring Supreme Court justice David Souter.

• 6/4/09 - Obama gives a speech in Cairo, Egypt "introducing himself to the muslim world".

• 6/17/09 - Announces the largest increase in regulations in history, what will eventually become the Dodd-Frank law.

• 6/26/09 - Signs "Cash-for-Clunkers", a law intended to boost fuel efficiency and stimulate American automakers. It is now recognized as having backfired. It led to a gain in American market share for Japanese and Korean manufacturers at the expense of U.S. car makers (while Japan's own program excluded U.S. cars) and improved the average fuel economy by just 0.6 mpg.

• 6/27/09 - The removal of American combat troops from Iraqi cities begins.

• 7/17/09 - Elaborates on plans to overhaul healthcare.

• 7/30/09 - After saying Boston police "acted stupidly" in arresting African-American Henry Gates and claiming police are prejudiced, Obama holds a "beer summit" with Gates and the arresting officer.

• 9/23/09 - Addresses the U.N., saying he envisions a "common future" of a world in which "the interests of peoples and nations are shared."

• 10/2/09 - Travels to Denmark with Oprah Winfrey in a failed attempt to bring the 2016 Summer Olympics to Chicago.

• 10/9/09 - Is awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize "for his extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples".

• 11/5/09 - The first major terror attack since 9/11/01 occurs at Ft. Hood, TX when Maj. Nidal Hasan killed 13 and wounded 30 others. The Obama administration refuses to categorize the attack as terror.

• 11/16/09 - Visits China.

• 12/25/09 - Al-Qaeda operative Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab attempts but fails to detonate plastic explosives concealed in his underwear during a flight to Detroit with 290 people on board.

3 hours ago
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img Simi Rehman posted a review

Let me acknowledge up front that Obama's tenure was marked by several failures, chief of which was in the realm of foreign policy especially toward the Middle East.

But there is one accusation many hurl at Obama that I think is patently unfair and really irks me to hear it.

"Obama set race relations back 50 years" or "Barack Obama has made the racial divide worse."

Sorry, this is utter rubbish. You can accuse President Obama of many things but the one thing he has always been above is identity politics. After the incidents in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, Falcon Heights, Minnesota, and Dallas, he was human enough to express measured sympathy for the victims, but always called for reconciliation and unity, much to the chagrin of many in the black community who feel that Obama did not do enough to speak to and for black Americans as the first black American President.

He was always caught between a rock and a hard place as the first President of Color (

1 day ago
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img Yuri Michael posted a review

Barack Obama is the leader of the nation’s progressive political party, but his belief in progress is more fundamental than a simple political label. “Hope” may have seemed a facile or even juvenile basis for a presidential campaign in 2008, but it was a sincere one, as Obama demonstrated one final time Wednesday afternoon in the final press conference of his presidency.

Speaking to reporters at the White House, he insisted that although the arc of history is long, passing even through a Donald Trump presidency, it does bend toward Obama’s vision of justice. This faith that there is a right side of history has been a hallmark of his term in office, but it looks shakier than ever to many members of his party since the November election. As he did in his farewell address on Tuesday, Obama made the case for hope, even as he offered a series of warnings to, and about, the incoming Trump administration.

1 day ago
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img Dev Achmed posted a review

In what is expected to be the last military operation ordered by President Obama, B-2 stealth bombers flying from the United States destroyed two ISIS camps in Libya overnight. Obama has admitted that failure to prevent post-revolution chaos in Libya was the greatest foreign policy mistake of his presidency.

The B-2s dropped 108 precision-guided bombs on what officials described as ISIS training camps 30 miles southwest of the Libyan coastal city of Sirte, killing an estimated 85 fighters. The strikes used strategic nuclear-capable bombers in order to "send a strategic message" to Russia and China, according to one source.

The Russian aircraft carrier Admiral Kuznetsov was in the Mediterranean after hosting a Libyan general, Khalifa Haftar. Putin has reportedly pledged weapons and financial support to Haftar, inserting Russia into a Libyan civil war that it has largely stayed out of up to this point.

The U.S. has conducted 495 airstrikes in Sirte since August, mostly by drones flown from Tripoli and by Marine Harrier jets and Cobra attack helicopters from a Navy amphibious assault ship off the coast of Libya.

1 day ago
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img Susan Boyle posted a review

As the last hours of Barack Obama's presidency ticked away this month, one thing is very noticeable, sadly. His instinct to blame other people remains as strong as ever.

His latest finger pointing is aimed at Rush Limbaugh and Fox News. “Well, what is true is that the ability of Republican leaders to rile up their base -- helped along by folks like Rush Limbaugh and some commentators on Fox News -- I think created an environment in which Republican voters would punish Republicans from cooperating with me,” Obama told Lester Hold on Dateline this week. “That hothouse of back-and-forth arguments and really sharp partisanship I think has been harmful to the country.”

This comes on the heels of interviews pointing the finger for every failure during his presidency on other people, from Guantanamo Bay to Libya to Obamacare (which, colloquially at least, bears his name!).

Of course this is the same president who spent his entire first term blaming the slow recovery on George W. Bush. “We were inheriting so many challenges... we knew this was going to take time because we got this big mess,” he complained... in late 2011!

But will the new president be any better? Well, there are two ways to react to failure. One is to deny all blame, even to the point of denying the failure itself, and to double down on your failed policies (Cuba and Venezuela come to mind). Unfortunately Barak Obama's presidency fits that mold, in my opinion.

The second is to admit your failure, change course, and do your best to fix the problem. I don't think anybody expects Donald Trump and his huge ego to accept blame when he fails, no more so than Obama or any politician for that matter.

But he's clearly a man who's changed his mind, charted a new path, and recovered from past failures, corporate bankruptcies, and changes of heart. Hopefully he won't waste years refusing to shift course in the face of failure. For better or worse, a pragmatist is taking over in Washington. It won't be pretty, but this is the change America asked for. After eight years of at times feckless leadership, I'm willing to give it a chance.

1 day ago
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img Anonymous posted a review

I think he had the wrong idea most of the time, but he acted the way a President should and didn't have any personal scandals (there were political ones of course). I genuinely believe he had honest and well-meaning intentions for the American people. He was just too idealistic and had trouble confronting reality, especially in regards to foreign affairs. He was too idealistic in his goals but he also grossly underestimated the lengths that some of his colleagues would go to undermine or block him. Unfortunately, it seems that our political parties have become more and more contentious and he got the worst of it. It would have been interesting to see how he may have fared (policy-wise) say 50 years ago where the parties seemed to work together a bit more.

2 days ago
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img Anonymous posted a review

All politics aside, no matter what you believe, he is a great orator. Listening to him speak is almost soothing. And a great sense of humor, and the first president to have a presence on social media.

2 days ago
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img Collin MAC posted a review

I don't agree with everything he did but he carried himself so incredibly well it was almost impossible not to take everything he said at face value and smile every once in a while. His charisma is what got him elected. It was his best attribute, that he could be appealing to most people just on how he spoke and how he presented himself.

2 days ago
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Barack Obama

The presidency of Barack Obama, elected in 2008 and reelected in 2012, officially ends
Book rating: 42.3 out of 100 with 226 ratings