100 Days later...
Obama took office Jan. 20 amid high expectations. The first black U.S. president, Barack Hussein Obama, 47, won over Americans with his youth, intellect and commitment to change the nation after the unpopular presidency of George W. Bush. Ushered into the White House on a tidal wave of emotion, hope and expectation, President Barack Obama marked his 100th day in office on April 29. So far the Obama administration has "only" tried to remake Washington, recover the economy and reshape the nation in the first 100 days. However, the situation is still serious with millions of people jobless, billions of dollars in bailouts and trillions of dollars in U.S. debt.
Encouragingly, 50 percent of the Americans now think the country is heading on the right track. He remains highly popular at home and abroad, where he has won acclaim for promising to close the Guantanamo Bay prison and end waterboarding and other harsh interrogation techniques. "Change we can Believe in" has manifested itself into much more than a campaign slogan. Guantanamo will be closing, restrictions on federal funding for stem cell research have been reversed, and troops will come home from Iraq. He uses the power of images, which made him a superstar during the presidential campaign. He gave the first televised interview of his term to al-Arabiya, an Arab news channel based in Dubai, and spoke directly to Iranian citizens via YouTube. He opened new relations with Cuba- to the delight of hardliners in Miami, no less. He also made the White House Web site interactive- with a forum entitled "Open for Questions."
He's shown outrage, as he did during the bonus scandals on Wall Street. He's tried to spread calm, as he did when he recently addressed the financial crisis. He shows thoughtfulness, equanimity, long-term thinking- former secretary of labor Robert Reich has called him "the serene center of the cyclone". For better or for worse, it is clear that the federal government as led by Barack Obama over the near four years will be radically different from that of George W. Bush. He has shown himself to be a thoughtful leader with a consistently activist philosophy, intent on exploiting a crisis to achieve progressive political ends. But how well he will accomplish ALL of his campaign goals is no more visible on April 30, 2009, than it was on February 10, 2007 in Springfield, Illinois, when he declared his intention to run for Office.