President Barack Obama
Barack Obama by Pete Souza
Barack Obama was the 44th President of the United States.
Served as President: 2009-2017
Vice President: Joseph Biden
Age at inauguration: 47
Born: August 4, 1961 in Honolulu, Hawaii
Married: Michelle LaVaughn Robinson Obama
Children: Malia, Sasha
What is Barack Obama most known for?
Barack Obama is most famous for being the first African American President of the United States.
Barack grew up in the state of Hawaii as well as Jakarta, a city in Indonesia. His mother, Stanley Ann Dunham, was from Kansas while his father, Barack Obama, Sr., was born in Kenya, Africa. After his parents were divorced, his mother married a man from Indonesia and the family moved to Indonesia for a time. Later, Barack was raised by his grandparents in Hawaii. When he was a kid he went by the nickname "Barry".
Barack graduated from Columbia University in New York in 1983. After graduating, he had a few different jobs including working at the Developing Communities Project in Chicago, Illinois. He soon decided he wanted to become a lawyer and he entered Harvard Law School. Upon graduating in 1991, he began practicing law.
President Obama at podium
Source: U.S. Navy
Photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Leah Stiles
Before He Became President
In 1996 Barack decided to enter the world of politics. He ran for the Illinois State Senate and won. He served on the state senate until 2004 when he was elected to the United States Senate.
After three years of serving on the U.S Senate, Obama entered the 2008 presidential election. He had gained national recognition for being an excellent speaker and was very popular. His biggest hurdle would be defeating former First Lady and New York Senator Hillary Clinton in the democratic primaries.
Obama defeated Hillary Clinton in the primaries and then took on republican candidate John McCain in the general election. He won the election and was inaugurated as president on January 20, 2009. He was re-elected again in 2012 winning the election over republican Mitt Romney.
Barack Obama's Presidency
Below we've listed some of the events and accomplishments during Barack Obama's presidency:
- Iraq and Afghanistan Wars - These wars were currently ongoing when Obama became president. The Iraq War has gone fairly well since Obama became president and is now considered over with U.S. Troops returning home. The Afghanistan War did not fare as well. U.S casualties grew and 2010 is now considered the worst year of the war. However, Osama bin Laden (the leader of the 9/11 attacks) was finally captured and killed on May 11, 2011.
- U.S. Economy - There are various arguments on how the U.S. economy fared under Obama's leadership. Obama pushed for higher taxes, a larger federal government, and stimulus plans to get the economy moving. While some signs showed improvement, the economy remained sluggish throughout his presidency and the national debt more than doubled.
- Health Care Reform - Obama pushed for health care reform and signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act into law in 2010. This law is sometimes called "Obamacare." This law was intended to help poor people to be able to afford health insurance.
- Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill - On April 20, 2010 an accident on an oil rig caused a giant oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Tons of oil was released into the ocean for days on end. This oil contaminated much of the gulf and is considered to be one of the worst environmental disasters in world history.
- Foreign Policy - President Obama's foreign relations accomplishments included a nuclear program agreement with Iran, toppling Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi, and opening diplomatic relations with Cuba (he was the first sitting president to visit Cuba since 1928).
At the time of this writing, Obama had just left office. What he will do after being president and how much he will be involved in world politics remains to be seen.
Fun Facts about Barack Obama
Barack Obama Playing Basketball
by Pete Souza
Barack Obama Playing Basketball
by Pete Souza
- He likes to play basketball and is an avid sports fan. His favorite teams are the Chicago Bears for football and the Chicago White Sox for baseball.
- He has several half-siblings including a younger half-sister named Maya Soetoro-Ng.
- He has made good money from writing books. In 2009 he made $5.5 million.
- Barack can speak Indonesian and some Spanish.
- He won a Grammy Award in 2006 for his voice on the audio book Dreams From My Father.
- After working at a Baskin-Robbins as a teen, Barack no longer likes ice cream. Bummer!
- He has read all the Harry Potter books.
- While living in Indonesia he got to eat some interesting items including grasshoppers and snake meat. Yum!
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