Time for a change?
A great president, in the middle of great things
Caitlin Taylor Collegio Reporter
Barack Obama has stayed true to the slogan of his presidential campaign: He has brought change to the United States. Obama has overcome a racial glass ceiling by becoming the first African-American president in the history of our nation, and the same motivation and headstrong qualities that allowed him to do this have, during his time in office, turned our nation around with new legislation, which has created a more successful, more unified United States. So, yes, Obama should run for re-election, despite the constant stream of negative commentary that comes from certain media outlets. Obama has made strong efforts to help our nation to become healthier and more profitable. Many people believed the health-care legislation could turn into a communist program that requires everyone to have health care and force people to pay more for their current health care. But in reality, the health-care legislation has given less fortunate people cheaper access to medical help. Many people also opposed legislation Obama supported that protects the personal data of Internet users. Advertisers especially have defended their practices as necessary to give Internet users more relevant advertising, but this legislation protected Internet users and their privacy from being tracked by corporations that make money harnessing your personal information for their own purposes, without ever even telling you.
Unfortunately, when a president runs for re-election, so many people look down on him because of things he’s tried to fix in our economy. But Obama has only four years to complete all his promises to our nation. He has done an extremely good job of trying to follow through with these promises, but it becomes difficult as he runs out of time in office.
If Obama were to have another four-year term, I believe that he will follow through on his word and help take our nation forward in reducing the deficit and improving our economy. People don’t give him a chance because they want a quick fix, and they want it now; when using common sense, these fixes will take years to complete, no matter who is president.
Re-election is not the right choice
Jeffrey Tangney Collegio Reporter
While I believe that President Obama is doing the best he can to get the country back on track, I don’t think he should run for re-election. As long as Obama is in office, there will exist immense pressure for rapid progress, something that is unattainable and undesirable. The best thing he can do is step down after one term.
My first problem with the president running for re-election is the assumption of a two-term presidency. What I mean by this is the historical tendency of presidents to serve two terms, though it is not a requirement and the president is not guaranteed a second term. However, the recent trends in the way election campaigns are run, sitting presidents’ waste 18 months of their terms of office trying to be re-elected, instead of doing the job they were chosen for. This isn’t the fault of those men; it is the fault of the growing media saturation of political officials and the inadequacy of the system to adapt rapidly to these changes. I believe the only way to fix this problem is by limiting the entire time for the campaign to three months, maximum. This way, the sitting president can concentrate on the job he is supposed to be doing instead of worrying about re-election.
My second problem with Obama running for re-election is the high expectations the public has for him are unattainable. I believe the main reason he was elected was that he offered change. While change was and is still needed, the average person expected rapid change when the system only allows for gradual change. This is partly because of the public’s naïve optimism, and partly because of the way technology has changed our lives. New technologies have made us expect to be able to access anything, anywhere, almost instantly. Therefore, when we look to the government, we expect it to be able to do what we want at a rate that is unfeasible. Since Obama is unable to produce the change Americans want in the limited time they want it in, he begins to look bad. His approval ratings keep slipping, and the recently averted government shutdown will do nothing to improve them. I believe he should focus his remaining time on trying to get as much accomplished as he can and not have to worry about campaigning.
But while I believe Obama should not run for re-election, I also think that we need a president who thinks the way he does. He has the right ideas but has no support to implement them and should he get re-elected it would only lead to four years of stagnation and gridlock.