Just Four Short Years Ago

In just under four years, our President has lead us safely out of the most devastating economic crisis our nation has seen since the Great Depression. Big banks had collapsed, our auto industry was near death, the stock market was in a free fall, unemployment had soared to 9.9%, and job reports showed that our economy was losing over half a million jobs per month. Health care reform was sorely needed, institutionalized discrimination still existed, and Osama bin Laden continued to elude us. The future looked bleak–America’s power appeared to be on the decline. Under the leadership of President Obama, America is on the rise again–the things he’s accomplished in his first term are remarkable.

Four years ago, our response to the worst attack ever on US soil had cost us trillions of dollars and thousands of American lives. Major corporations had run off with our investments, given us bad mortgages, and then left America with the bill. We had endured the worst housing crisis ever. Failed economic policies had turned record surpluses into record deficits (and that was from the party that brands itself as “fiscally conservative). Thanks to the leadership of President Obama, America is making a comeback that only one other generation has had to complete. Under the President’s watch, our economy no longer bleeds half a million jobs each month–there have been over thirty straight months of job creation. Now, more Americans are insured (and able to get insurance) than ever before in our nation’s history. Being a woman is no longer a pre-existing condition, and having such a condition no longer disqualifies you from having insurance. Students such as me now have access to their parent’s health insurance, and college is even more accessible because of the student loan reform enacted in 2010.

Our foreign policy outlook is stronger than it was just four short years ago. America’s enemies are being captured and brought to justice, thanks to a relentless pursuit of terrorists such as Osama bin Laden. The Iraq war has ended (as promised) and a timeline for leaving Afghanistan is in place. Codified discrimination is no more: “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” has been repealed, and legislation taking steps to guarantee equal pay for women has been signed. Businesses are recording record profits, the housing market is the strongest it’s been since 2008. And all this has been accomplished despite a Republican war on the Obama presidency, which has led to a number of blocked policies–including jobs bills. It’s understandable that some Americans are frustrated with the slower-than-expected economic recovery. But remember, it takes a short time for a house to burn, and a long time to rebuild it. It’s tempting to hold the President Obama to a standard of perfection, but when you think of where were just four short years ago and compare it to where we are today, it’s remarkable to see how far we’ve come. Bravo, Mr. President–you’ve earned four more.

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