Obama in Office: The First Two Years

Obama in Office: The First Two Years

Obama in Office: The First Two Years

Obama in Office: The First Two Years

Synopsis

Barack Obama entered office on a wave of popular expectation; will he exit at the hands of a Tea Party inspired populist tsunami or return for four more years? Obama in Office brings together well-established political scientists and journalists to offer the first detailed assessment of President Obama and his first two years in office. This book covers the range of policy tests which the administration has faced during this period, including the recession and its jobless recovery, health care reform, financial regulation, the BP oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, and the ongoing war in Afghanistan. Looking beyond the midterms, Obama in Office considers the results of 2010, the impact of the Tea Party, and the prospects for 2012.

Excerpt

Posting a solid victory in the 2012 presidential election, President Barack Obama emerged to confront a divided Congress and new and continuing challenges, including the “fiscal cliff,” new school shooting tragedies, and rocky foreign affairs. He moved quickly to consolidate political capital, nominate replacement cabinet members, and offer new policy initiatives in areas unaddressed during the first four years of his presidency. The deep partisan divide in Congress that plagued Obama’s first term persisted into the second, but he seemed determined to press opponents harder and return to issues and commitments on which he had campaigned in both 2008 and 2012. The Affordable Care Act that had dominated the policy agenda of the first term was now primed for implementation. Immigration reform, gun control, tax and entitlement reform, and a renewed spirit in the Middle East and Afghanistan dawned with the new administration. Even though the 2010 midterm elections had institutionalized an era of bitterly divided government, it was not too soon to begin to look forward hopefully to 2014. But to return to where this story started, in January 2010, just one year into the Obama administration, Dr. Nada Mourtada-Sabbah, AUS Vice Chancellor for Development and Alumni Affairs and Professor of International Studies at American University of Sharjah (AUS), asked that I assist her in the organization of a convocation of academics, journalists, and practitioners in their respective fields of expertise to give an objective and balanced evaluation of Obama’s policies and performance since taking office. That conference led to an ongoing discussion and research, which eventually became the beginning of this book. The research and book took on a life beyond the conference as the Obama administration progressed and authors and topics were added, but this book would not have been written without the support of Dr. Mourtada-Sabbah and the American University of Sharjah. I want to thank AUS for sponsoring and hosting this conference in early 2009. Individually, I want to thank His Highness Sheikh Dr. Sultan Bin Mohammed Al Qassimi, United Arab Emirates Supreme Council Member, Ruler of Sharjah, and President of the American University of Sharjah, under whose aegis the conference was held; AUS Trustee . . .

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