Will Obama dodge the second -term curse?

Posted 21 Jan 2013 by Walaa Idris

Barack Obama

Obama’s second term began with record unemployment levels, hostile political battles and a very divisive re-election campaign that took the shine off the optimism and hopes that were the backdrop of his first historic election. But what will his second term be like? How will his legacy and presidency be remembered? Plus will he dodge the second – term curse?

The second – term curse that plagued every president from George Washington – who had angry mobs surrounding his home in Philadelphia to denounce him for the Jay Treaty – to Bill Clinton who was impeached in 1998 and every second – termer in between, from FDR, Nixon, and even Reagan.

Lefties on both sides of the Atlantic will not admit that Mr Obama’s second term, while historical, will most probably be less productive than his first. Despite Obamacare, his endless stimulus in the first four years and the latest two legislative successes – fiscal cliff and debt ceiling – his second term shows signs of being very challenging.

Gun control is set to divide the country further, while the economy is still on rocky grounds – not to mention, form recent events, killing Ben Laden did not actually kill Al Qaeda. All three are unforgiving back breakers he has to face head – on; my bet one of them will be his jinx.

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1 comment(s)


21 Jan, 17:25

You lost me at your first paragraph. “Obama’s second term began with record unemployment levels?” How short your memory. His first term started with the very same (but trending higher) 7.8% unemployment level, something he inherited from his predecessor.

He’s back at the same level, 2.2% lower than the worst of the Bush Recession, and heading in the right direction.

Poor fact-checking like that in the opening paragraph makes me doubt the premise of your entire post.

The phrase “endless stimulus” seems a bit off the mark. Other than the “American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009” signed into law in February 2009 (much of which ended up as conservative and ineffective tax cuts), what stimulus are you referring to?

As unemployment continues to recede (as long as fiscal hostage-taking doesn’t continue), the economy will continue to improve. So the economy doesn’t seem to be a jinx (unless the Republicans manage to crash the economy again).

Most Americans are tired of the endless mass shootings, so there seems to be some agreement among everyone (except the NRA) that something needs to be done. At the very least, the majority of Americans (you know, the ones who choose to re-elect Obama) aren’t against gun control measures, probably ones more extreme than the President is willing to settle for. Again, I don’t see a problem for him there.

Finally, while I don’t agree with Obama’s conservative stance on assassination, by continuing to put pressure on existing members of Al Qaeda as he is doing, as well as being more friendly to the people from whom Al Qaeda tries to draw recruits and undercutting their ability to do so, Obama continues to be effective at reducing Al Qaeda’s effectiveness. This one could be a problem, but no more than for anyone holding the office in the last 20 years.

No, his biggest challenge will be the intransigence of the far-right and their willingness to crash the economy (again) just to stand in the way of a President who happens to be from another party.

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