Throughout the GOP debates, candidates have criticized President Obama for not doing enough on a variety of issues, which include the economy, jobs, gas prices and his stance on Iran’s nuclear program. In reality, the GOP candidates are wrong and President Obama stands a very good chance for reelection because of what he has done while in office.
The recession that resulted from the market crash of 2008 put the United States in its biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression. Many have this perception that presidents can fully control the direction of the economy. The truth is that they cannot and most of that power in government rests with Congress. Nevertheless, voters still hold the president accountable when the economy tanks and praise him when it grows. Since January, 2012, the economy has been growing and unemployment has been decreasing. If this trend continues through the Presidential Debates in the fall, President Obama will have a stronger economy to stand on for reelection.
Since the Detroit bailout went into motion, American auto companies have seen a massive rebound and GM is back on top in the United States. President Obama took much criticism when following through with the bailout, but it turned out to be a huge success. As a result of the bailout, thousands of jobs were saved, and it is now reported that thousands of more jobs are being created throughout the entire U.S. auto industry.
It is also important to not forget the Jobs Bill that President Obama proposed. Officially titled “The American Jobs Act”, was defeated in Congress. Since him taking office, he has been plagued with a do nothing Congress, which has an approval rating of 6%. The American Jobs Act was designed to offer tax cuts to businesses that hired long term unemployed workers and returning veterans. It would have prevented layoffs and created new jobs by creating new projects to rebuild America’s infrastructure. All of this would have been paid for, as it was part of President Obama’s long term Deficit Reduction Program. However, Congress did not pass it, resulting in the death of the bill.
President Obama has kept his promise in ending the war in Iraq and bringing US troops home. Even though this pullout date was put in place by President Bush, he followed through with it despite the GOP criticism and their wanting to keep us in Iraq for a longer period of time. The war in Afghanistan has also started to wind down with a potential pullout date as early as 2013, but no later than 2014. The cost that will be saved from continuing to fight these wars will be significant and will allow the government to allocate those funds to better the United States.
He has increased the usage of unmanned drones to hunt down terrorists, as well as doubling down on U.S. military Special Operations to seek out most wanted terrorists, as he did with Osama Bin Laden. By doing so, you limit potential U.S. casualties in conflict. This also points to President Obama conducting a strategic shift in U.S. military action. Rather than deploy a large military, which is trained for symmetrical warfare, it makes more sense to utilize Special Operations and unmanned drones, which are the perfect asymmetrical options for the asymmetrical battlefield, in which we are now fighting on. It costs less and has demonstrated better results in the War on Terror.
Over the last few weeks, Israel has expressed concerns and is pressuring President Obama to militarily act on Iran for trying to develop a nuclear program. Whether or not one agrees with Iran having a nuclear program, should the United States commit itself to another potentially long term military effort to stop Iran from developing nuclear power? This is a very important question, especially since the country appears divided over it. However, this has not stopped the GOP from attacking the actions of President Obama on this issue, which are all untrue. Mitt Romney has stated that the president fails to put crippling sanctions on Iran and is not conveying that a military action is on the table. Prior to that statement, President Obama has conveyed that there is a military action on the table and sanctions are in place. Just another case of the GOP attacking him for something that is not true.
To add to that, every intelligence agency in the United States, and an ex Mossed chief, all claim that it is not smart to attack Iran at this point, before considering all diplomatic approaches. However, if Israel is so worried, then why doesn’t Israel just take care of it themselves? The truth is that they cannot without isolating themselves and this is why Netanyahu has been pressuring President Obama to militarily act on Iran. Every bit of talk I hear about Iran and a nuclear weapon sounds identical to just before the 2003 invasion of Iraq. This nation cannot afford another long term military engagement. The cost of American lives and resources far outweighs any little return we may see.
President Obama is by no means a “do-nothing” president. He has tried to clean up a mess left by the last president, but gets stopped short at every turn by the GOP. Compromise has become a dirty word in Washington D.C. and as a result, the American people are the ones that suffer from it. The economy is on an upward swing, unemployment is decreasing, war is ending, and none of the GOP candidates can out debate him. For a nation to fully recover from a crisis that has been the worst since the Great Depression, it does not happen overnight and is a slow, but steady process. Now that America is on the road to recovery, most Americans might be willing to see how President Obama performs in a second term.