Weighing The Nominees: Barack Obama

Four years ago, a historic inauguration took place in Washington as our nation elected its first African-American President.

The excitement in the United States was abundant, and President Obama has lived up to every single ounce of it. Let’s find out how.

There is one issue in this election that stands out more than the rest, and as Bill Clinton has been known to say. “It’s the economy, stupid.”

Everyone in this country could probably agree that the economy was disastrous when former President Bush left office. The unemployment rate was sky high, and we were in the middle of our greatest economic recession since the Great Depression.

The plain truth is that President Obama faced an economic and foreign policy nightmare when he took office, and in four short years has made a lot of headway into fixing the mess he inherited.

Obama’s stimulus plan has helped the stock market rise and has put more than five million Americans back to work. As promised, he lowered the unemployment rate to under 8%, a number that is decreasing monthly. He bailed out the auto industry, which saved another million jobs, and U.S. made vehicle sales that went down during Bush’s term have shot up dramatically.

Unlike Obama, Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney would not have bailed out the auto industry, as he wrote in a 2008 op-ed piece for the New York Times titled “Let Detroit go Bankrupt.” After seeing the success of the bailout, Romney has now flip-flopped on this issue, when he clearly rejected it in 2008.

President Obama also has increased job opportunities for recent college graduates. A recent study confirms the direct correlation between the decreasing unemployment rate and the opportunities for recent college graduates.
Now, on to Obamacare, one of Obama’s greatest accomplishments over his first four years in office.

Let’s start with all the misconceptions surrounding Obamacare. According to the Republicans, Obama’s health care plan raises Medicare costs on regular Americans. The truth is, according to the Congressional Budget Office, 19 million people will receive tax credits of about $4,800 under Obama’s plan to help them afford health insurance. Also according to the Republicans, Obamacare will make Americans lose their health insurance. Not only will Americans keep their health insurance plan, it will make it stronger.

Now let’s talk about the many benefits of Obamacare. One major benefit is that insurance companies will not be able to deny health insurance to people with pre-existing conditions, things like cancer, asthma or back pain. According to the Department of Health and Human Services, between 20% and 50% of Americans suffer from a preexisting condition. Another benefit of Obamacare is that now young people are able to stay on their parents account until they are 26, instead of 18. This will keep young people insured and healthy until they complete their education or can afford their own coverage.

Another hot topic in this election is foreign policy. Considering he inherited two long, drawn out wars, President Obama has done an outstanding job in the foreign policy arena.

The President has done a stellar job hunting down terrorists, including 9/11 mastermind and Al-Qaeda Leader Osama Bin Laden. The President had the guts to pull the trigger on what was an extremely dangerous mission. Four years ago, Obama made a promise that if he had evidence that Bin Laden was in Pakistan, he would take him out.

On the other hand, Mitt Romney would have done no such thing, as during his run for the White House in 2008 he criticized Obama’s remarks, saying he would not make such a move. But once again, in classic flip-flop Romney fashion with the benefit of 20-20 hindsight, he denies making these comments.

President Obama has also had to deal with several uprisings against governments in the Middle East, including Libya. The President made a brilliant decision in Libya by choosing to not get involved until there were other countries going in as well. This helped to make sure that zero American lives were lost, and dictator Moammar Gadhafi was forced out of power.

While the President has accomplished much already, he knows that there is plenty more work to do.

He is committed to educating our country’s youth, by making secondary education more affordable by doubling funding for pell grants, and establishing a college tax credit. He also plans to implement incentives to keep teachers motivated in the classroom, such as the Race to the Top initiative designed to reward innovation in local schools.

There was much excitement in the air when President Obama was inaugurated in January of 2009, and he has delivered. If he can accomplish so much in four years, imagine what he can do in another four.