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Scrutiny
  
One out of every five!
Obama made Several Promises during his Campaign days, but precious few seem to have been Realised. Will America and The World cherish his Presidency The same way they had Welcomed it? For that to happen, Obama will have to live up to Expectations That could be well Beyond his Reach.
20/01/2011

It is quite normal for elected candidates to bear the burden of expectations. What makes Obama peculiar is their scale and magnitude. That has in part to do with the symbolism of his election. But that’s a small part, as a majority has to do with all the promises of change he made. Contrary to the expectations of 75,000 supporters and 365 electoral votes, the POTUS [President of the United States] Barack Obama has not delivered the change that they could believe in.

His stimulus package creditably prevented a probable catastrophic financial crash but hasn’t nudged unemployment figures by much. Obama’s flagship agenda on the health care bill still awaits its time in the sun. The same goes for his much hyped climate change bill. The major blows for his supporters so far have been his failure in closing the Guantanamo Bay prison and also in providing relief for illegal immigrants, which he promised and initiated initially. Ironically, his promises of closing Gitmo and solving other human rights issues were part of the parcel that won him the Nobel Peace Prize. PolitiFact found that Obama has kept around 91 of his promises... out of 500!

Interestingly, history bears testimony that not one POTUS has met any unrealistic deadlines or promises. Take for instance Woodrow Wilson, who promised to keep US out of World War I and ended up pushing US into the same war. Then came Herbert Hoover in 1928, who, in his presidency speech, pledged to end poverty and promised “a chicken in every pot and two cars in every garage”– but eventually gifted US ‘The Great Depression’ and gave many chickens a new lease of life! Franklin D. Roosevelt graciously ‘un’met his 1932 pledge to maintain balanced budgets and keep US out of World War II. Richard Nixon promised in 1968 to ‘quickly’ resolve the Vietnam War. He didn’t! George H.W. Bush Senior promised in 1988, “Read my lips: No new taxes!” He increased taxes and also parted with exclusions for high-income taxpayers. It seems Obama, is only moving in congruence with history.

Obama’s approval rating has dropped from 67% in 2009 to 50% today, the lowest ever at the end of a president’s first year term. Jimmy Carter & Bill Clinton were the only other presidents who, like Obama, started their second years as president in the 50s (percentage wise), earning 55% and 54%, respectively. A YouGov Polimetrix poll for The Economist found that 51% people think Obama says what people want to hear and not what he believes in.

Beyond any apprehension, the second year will be tougher. With Obama losing support (and majority) at the Senate, passing health care bills, moving his immigration policy further and ensuring more green jobs will be harder. But as his campaign showed, Obama is known to be at his best with his back to the wall, at least when it comes to giving off his spiel against countries like India and China and the business threats they pose to the future of America. As facts show, there are more pressing issues for him to worry about.

[Ed Note: The list of Obama’s unfulfilled promises has only gone up. He promised to spend $50 billion by 2013 & $1 billion each year on AIDS eradication; evidently, he has failed to do so. There is still no concrete plan on Gitmo, or on Afghanistan, and the healthcare bill remains hung in debate]

By:- Sray Agarwal
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