POLITICS

HuffPost Readers On Obama: "A Second Jimmy Carter"

03/31/2010 05:12 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

On the anniversary of Barack Obama's inauguration, we asked Huffington Post readers to evaluate their president's first year in office. Responses flooded in, many which expressed a distinct dissatisfaction with US current affairs. Universally, readers complained about the state of America's economy, health care and foreign policy. However, readers seemed to be of two minds about how these problems reflected on Obama's personal performance.

Some Huffpo readers felt that most of the nation's problems were "inherited" by Obama, and that his conduct as president has been fine, under the circumstances.

Many, like commentator kayatarms blamed most of Obama's problems on the Bush administration:

Bottom line [is] what can you expect from what America has had to deal with for the past 8 years. Americans have amnesia only too often. Do we remember why the hell we are here? Foreclosures, unemployment, republicans and democrats eating their own? This is Bush's and Cheney's and the Republicans mess!

Classy T agreed, maintaining:

One man cannot change decades of improprieties in just one year.

Others seemed to pin more of the blame on Obama's current opposition. Cyclebear said:

I am a huge supporter of this good president and stand by him 100%. I blame the ENTIRE downfall of our nation on the "Toxic Trio" -- the republicans, the conservatives, & the fundamentalists. It is THEY who are destroying our nation and THEY who are at war with every good and decent citizen in our country.

Some felt that the problems Obama inherited went further back than Bush, and blamed the Clintons. Leftwriteleftwrite said:

I would like to see President Obama rid himself of top advisors such as Mr. Emmanuel who are too linked to Clinton policies favoring corporate America. We need new ideas not driven by the past.

On the other side of the spectrum, readers felt Obama was not totally blameless for the state we are in today. Some commentators, like Rubyfoo, felt problems were were exacerbated by Obama's personal failures:

Brilliant speaker, poor political strategist, has gotten mediocre advice, and ended up making poor judgments especially about priorities. It's the economy, stupid, has never seemed so relevant. Health care was bound to be a can of worms and it sucked Congress into a hole that sees no bottom.

Commentators particularly zeroed in on what they percieved as Obama's "lack of follow-through." Craig Deforest said:

Barack's record is profoundly mixed. He works well with others in the office, has terrific bearing and great ideas, and has actually accomplished a great deal -- but he appears to lack follow-through on most of his brilliant schemes. Hence his most important projects (closing U.S. illegal prisons like Guantanamo Bay, exiting our unnecessary foreign occupations, restoring the U.S. economy, and enacting universal health care) are all falling behind important milestones.

RodgzK agrees, saying:

While we really didn't really expect him to prove to be another Franklin Roosevelt, we did hold out hope that he might be another Harry Truman. Sadly, it's starting to look as though what we got was a second Jimmy Carter.

The DCSwede took a more circumspect attitude:

I am a "libertarian" who was moved by President Obama's campaign. I did not agree with everything he promised, but I have gotten what I voted for: responsible leadership and an end to the Bush attitude toward foreign policy...He needs to do even more on civil rights (for gays and against torture) and focus, now, on jobs and the deficit. If I can see he is doing that I will continue to feel vindicated in my vote

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