Get Rolling on Foreign Policy Our Re-Elected President First Must Put in Place a New Team

By Simpson, Dan | Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA), November 14, 2012 | Go to article overview

Get Rolling on Foreign Policy Our Re-Elected President First Must Put in Place a New Team


Simpson, Dan, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)


President Barack Obama is now in a strong position to gain some yards for the United States in foreign policy.

Until Tuesday he operated under two major constraints. The first was that nobody wanted to cut a deal with a president who might have been out of office in January. President Bill Clinton tried to pursue what turned out to be some of his more perishable deal- making in the Middle East in 2000, the last year of his term. Mr. Obama is now going to be around for the next four years, long enough to start and sustain serious policy enterprises.

The second constraint is that the secretaries of state and defense and the national security adviser basically carry out the foreign policies of the president, and the personal aspects of diplomacy, in particular, depend to an important degree on the people occupying those key positions. Little is more durable in such matters than agreements arrived at in small meetings, sealed with a handshake or a hug.

Top U.S. leaders in foreign policy likely to leave at the start of the second Obama administration include Secretary of State Hillary R. Clinton, Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner and possibly National Security Adviser Thomas E. Donilon. Not to mention the sudden departure of CIA Director David H. Petraeus.

Unless Mr. Obama wants to take on all these jobs himself, an extremely unlikely option given the domestic problems he faces even before he pardons the Thanksgiving turkey, he will have to wait until he fills at least some of these key slots before he can launch second-term foreign policy initiatives.

There is plenty to do now that pre-election constraints have been removed.

First of all, he won big and he is now free of the political threat that Republicans always pose to Democrats in the field of national security -- the charge that they are "soft on defense." He is free of the political threat that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu posed in courting the Republican vote and supporting Mitt Romney -- that the American Jewish vote would go against him. Jewish- Americans voted 70 percent for Mr. Obama, in keeping with their custom of voting for Democrats.

He doesn't have to worry now that Republicans will exaggerate the economic, political and military threat that China presents and turn it into votes against him. Remember the "Who lost China?" furor employed by Republicans in the 1950s to go after President Harry Truman and the Democrats? Mr. Obama can now employ the "flexibility" toward Russia that Republicans tried to use against him and improve relations with the bear, particularly when it comes to nuclear disarmament.

On a critical domestic as well as foreign issue -- immigration -- the president is now free to try to update policy, in the process improving always-sensitive U. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Get Rolling on Foreign Policy Our Re-Elected President First Must Put in Place a New Team
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.