Question of the Week: “Do you think President Barack Obama will win the election? Why or why not?”
Question and Photos by Yvonne Kemp
Clem Richardson: “He is the Commander and Chief! He was the first president to overhaul healthcare in 90 years! He has the passion and vision, plus he cares about the 47%.”
Larry Griffin: “I think he’s going to win. He already has his plan in motion, but he needs another four years and the help of Congress to implement it.”
Diana Ott: “Yes, because he was the only president that brought us out of self-destruction with God’s will. And I truly know it is a change.”
Sandra Wilson: “I think President Obama will be reelected because he has done an excellent job given what he inherited and God will give him a chance to finish his work.”
To the Editor:
Last month, I arrived in Milwaukee to become the new President of Everest College, a downtown campus that currently offers practical, career-oriented courses to about 280 students. I will also be the school’s last president.
As the Milwaukee Community Journal reported on September 14, Everest has made the difficult decision to close our Milwaukee campus after about two years of operations. We came here in 2010 with a terrific new facility, many years of experience in higher education for working adults and high hopes.
Unfortunately, our campus did not achieve the academic and professional results that we and our accreditors demand for our students. We fell far short of the expectations we set for ourselves and we regret that deeply.
But we are not turning our back on this community or our current and former students. The national organization that owns Everest, Corinthian Colleges Inc., has made a substantial financial commitment to ensure that students who did not succeed will not be left in debt. And all of us at Everest Milwaukee are committed to offering those students who have enrolled with us a quality education throughout the remainder of their programs.
When Corinthian Colleges opened the Everest Milwaukee campus, we had good reason to expect success. Corinthian serves 91,000 students in 26 states and Canada, on 116 campuses and online. Some of our campuses have thrived in cities with challenging economic conditions, such as Detroit. Last year, Corinthian’s schools had more than 49,000 graduates and 68% of them found employment in their fields of study.
Corinthian’s schools demand, and routinely deliver, solid results. We are closing Everest Milwaukee because it did not perform. But we still have much hard work ahead of us. We will continue to conduct classes until all our currently enrolled students complete their programs next spring. And we will offer our students career services and job placement assistance for months after they graduate. As a veteran of 30 years in career education, I’m personally committed to helping our students succeed in the classroom and in the workplace.
All of us at Everest are sorry to leave Milwaukee. But in the months ahead, we are determined to do a good job for our students and our community.
President, Everest College Milwaukee
by Kia Marie Green
Despite rain showers President Barack Obama delivered a rousing speech to an enthusiastic audience Saturday at Henry Maier Festival Park on the Summerfest Grounds.
An estimated 18,000 supporters waited nearly three hours to hear the president speak with excitement and anticipation. Gathered in a line that wrapped from the Marcus Amphitheater entrance of the Summerfest Grounds to the Milwaukee Art Museum and beyond, supporters discussed the importance of this election and the national imperative to return Barack Obama to the White House.
Wasting no time, the president gracefully took the stage to stirring applause and cheers. “I don’t see a lot of victims here today,” he said, “I see a lot of hardworking Wisconsinites.”
On a mission, the president discussed issues he promised to tackle if re-elected and addressed the differences between his platform and that of his opponent’s, Mitt Romney.
Focused on critical points – boosting the economy through the middle class, creating jobs and improving education – the President Obama eloquently and passionately stated his case. “…We’ve got a very big choice to make in this election. And it’s not just between two candidates or two parties; it’s a choice between two different paths for America, two different visions for our future. “
“Now my opponent, he believes in top-down economics,” the president began until interrupted by loud “boos” and chants from the crowd. The president’s reply: “Don’t boo — vote!”
Citing Romney’ s belief in building from the top down, the president said that’s a concept that’s been tried and proven to be of ill effect.
“We don’t build the economy from the top down,” he said. We build it from the bottom up, from the middle out. That’s what we’re fighting for.”
Adding: “We can’t move forward if we’ve got leaders who write off half the nation, calling them a bunch of victims who will never take responsibility for their lives.”
Obama outlined the new tax code, which requires individuals with incomes above $250,000 to pay higher tax rates, thus allowing tax breaks for the middle class. He said when the middle class has extra money from lower taxes, they will spend it, therefore boosting the economy and even cited former President Bill Clinton’s administration as evidence of such success.
On the topic of creating jobs, the president said one of his main focuses is to bring manufacturing jobs back to the United States, rather than foreign countries.
“We’ve already created more than half a million new manufacturing jobs,” Obama said. “So now what we have to do is stop giving tax breaks to companies that are shipping jobs overseas.”
The president also said he plans to create jobs by investing in natural energy and fuel.
Focusing on the importance of education, the president said it is imperative that every child receive the opportunity to pursue a college education and no circumstances – especially not money – should deny our youth this right.
“I believe that in the United States of America, no child should have her dream deferred because of an overcrowded classroom,” Obama said. “No family should have to set aside a college acceptance letter because they don’t have the money.”
The president said he wants to recruit 10,000 math and science teachers, as well as improve early childhood education.
“Let’s give 2 million more workers the chance to get the skills they need at community colleges,” he said. “Let’s help colleges and universities keep tuition down.”
Underscoring that his path to addressing the nation’s problem will not be quick, but all the problems are solvable, especially with fight, determination and unity, the president said.
“I’m not fighting to create Democratic jobs or Republican jobs, I’m fighting to create American jobs,” the president said. “I’m not fighting to improve schools in red states or schools in blue states, I’m fighting to improve schools in the United States. I’m not fighting just on behalf of workers or businesses, or rich or poor, the 1 percent or the 99 percent. I’m fighting for American values. They belong to all of us.”
Rallying his base’s support, the president declared victory.
“If you get out there and work these last 45 days, if you’re willing to make some phone calls for me and knock on some doors for me and vote for me, we’ll win Milwaukee,” the president declared. “We’ll win Wisconsin. We’ll finish what we started, and we’ll remind the world why the United States of America is the greatest nation on Earth.”
Prior to the president speaking at the rally, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, Wisconsin Sen. Herb Kohl and Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin also spoke. Each speaker encouraged the audience to help spread the word about the Democratic candidate and highlighted the importance of voting.
by John Nichols
Charlotte — The last Democratic president of the United States took a rock star turn at his party’s national convention Wednesday night, leveraging his outsized reputation as a master of governing — and, more importantly, campaigning — to make the case for the reelection of the current Democratic president. It was a remarkable performance by a political wunderkind turned senior statesman. And it provided a powerful reminder that in the ex-president competition — and there is an ex-president competition — Bill Clinton has defeated George Bush, overwhelmingly.
Where a week ago, Bush was the former president whose name dare not be spoken at his party’s national convention, Clinton was more than a revered elder returning to the warm embrace of his party’s convention: He was a defining figure.
Even Democrats who were never Clinton fans — and it is important to remember that there were a lot of them when he was president, and when he campaigned in 2008 to make former first lady Hillary Clinton, not Barack Obama, his partisan successor — agreed that Bill Clinton did a damn fine job of framing what is all but certain to be the Obama message for the remainder of the 2012 campaign.
“In Tampa, the Republican argument against the president’s re-election was pretty simple: We left him a total mess, he hasn’t finished cleaning it up yet, so fire him and put us back in,” declared William Jefferson Clinton, who took the extraordinary step of nominating the man who did not only succeed him but who defeated Hillary Clinton for the opportunity to do so.
“I like the argument for President Obama’s re-election a lot better,” Bill Clinton continued. “He inherited a deeply damaged economy, put a floor under the crash, began the long hard road to recovery, and laid the foundation for a more modern, more well-balanced economy that will produce millions of good new jobs, vibrant new businesses, and lots of new wealth for the innovators.”
Clinton was charming the crowd, of course. But he was doing much more than that. He was offering them a way of thinking with regard to where the second term of a Democratic president might lead a country that remains fretful about an ailing economy will ever fully recover. This was about the memory of a presidency that saw the creation of 22.7 million jobs, balanced budgets and surpluses. And, yes, it was about a measure of forgetfulness: especially with regard to Clinton’s support for failed free-trade agreements and dysfunctional deregulations of the banking and financial-services industries.
No matter what the measure Americans make of Clinton, he has political capital. And he spent a good deal of that capital Wednesday to frame an argument for Barack Obama’s re-election. That argument proposed a game change. No more apologies. No more nuance. Democrats, Clinton said, should laugh off the attacks they heard from Tampa last week and run proudly on a record that — if imperfect — remains far superior to that of their Republican challengers.
The former president asked the questions America is asking. And he answered them as he says Democrats must: “Are we where we want to be? No. Is the president satisfied? No. Are we better off than we were when he took office, with an economy in free fall, losing 750,000 jobs a month. The answer is Yes.
Despite a a bow to the old-fashioned bipartisanship of another age (hailing a Republican, Dwight Eisenhower, for sending troops to integrate the schools in Little Rock; recalling his work with Republican ex-presidents on international aid initiatives), Clinton came to this convention with a bluntly partisan bottom line:
The Republican narrative is that all of us who amount to anything are completely self-made. One of our greatest Democratic Chairmen, Bob Strauss, used to say that every politician wants you to believe he was born in a log cabin he built himself, but it ain’t so.
We Democrats think the country works better with a strong middle class, real opportunities for poor people to work their way into it and a relentless focus on the future, with business and government working together to promote growth and broadly shared prosperity. We think “we’re all in this together” is a better philosophy than “you’re on your own.”
Who’s right? Well since 1961, the Republicans have held the White House twenty-eight years, the Democrats twenty-four. In those fifty-two years, our economy produced 66 million private sector jobs. What’s the jobs score? Republicans 24 million, Democrats 42 million!
Then came the critical comparison — not to the Republican position of the moment, but to his tenure:
I understand the challenge we face. I know many Americans are still angry and frustrated with the economy. Though employment is growing, banks are beginning to lend and even housing prices are picking up a bit, too many people don’t feel it.
I experienced the same thing in 1994 and early 1995. Our policies were working and the economy was growing but most people didn’t feel it yet. By 1996, the economy was roaring, halfway through the longest peacetime expansion in American history.
President Obama started with a much weaker economy than I did. No president — not me or any of my predecessors — could have repaired all the damage in just four years. But conditions are improving and if you’ll renew the president’s contract you will feel it.
I believe that with all my heart.
Clinton was asking the American people to trust him — and, by extension, President Obama. If they do, Obama could be well on his way to becoming only the second Democrat since Franklin Roosevelt to serve two full terms.
Conventions are theatrical events. People applaud even for speeches that don’t merit much of a response. But Clinton’s nominating address was an epic performance, and it earned thunderous applause from a convention that loved him as much — perhaps a bit more — than the one that nominated him in 1992.
This is what former presidents, even those with egos modestly less developed than Clinton’s, live for. (And it is certainly what presidents live for when they imagine that, at the next election, a certain former first lady might herself become the commander-in-chief.) But not every former president is afforded the option.
There was no such opportunity provided the last Republican president. George Bush brought no message to the podium of the national convention that nominated the next Republican presidential contender. Bush didn’t have hall pass in Tampa.
Last week, at the Republican National Convention, the forty-third president was just another political has-been, glancing out from the Jumbotron in a video that wisely kept him in the shadows of his slightly more popular father. So flawed was the Bush-Cheney record — unpopular wars, New Orleans flyovers, burst bubbles, the collapse of the financial sector of the economy and a “corporate-welfare” bailout of the big banks — that even Republican convention speakers treated him like a political plague. A few speakers, like Kentucky Senator Rand Paul, took swipes at wars of whim and assaults on civil liberties. Most speakers avoided even referencing the eight-year period when Bush and Dick Cheney ran the country — often with absolute majorities in the House and Senate. Even Bush’s brother, Jeb, could not bring himself to utter the name “George Bush.”
“The smart thing to do is focus on here and now and not give President Obama an opportunity to bring up George Bush’s presidency,” admitted former Bush White House spokesman Ari Fleischer. Fleischer said he was “sorrowful about it.”
But Democrats were amused. “It is no accident that Democrats celebrate our past president, while Republicans virtually banished theirs,” gloated New York Senator Chuck Schumer as he celebrated the fact that Clinton would follow him on Wednesday night’s convention program.
Political parties have always had complicated relationships with their former presidents, especially if those commanders-in-chief leave (or are voted out of) office at a young enough age to require invites to the quadrennial conventions where their successors are nominated and renominated. But never has the ex-president dichotomy been better summed up than in the past two weeks. Bush did not have a ticket to the stadium. Clinton was calling the plays — for the Obama campaign and, perhaps, for America.
Clinton had the crowd, as Obama will have to have them — not just Thursday night but through November. And Clinton closed Wednesday night’s speech as George Bush never could. Clinton roared toward the conclusion of his address with a declaration and a call: “We champion the cause for which our founders pledged their lives, their fortunes, their sacred honor—to form…”
And the crowd concluded: “…a more perfect union.”
John Nichols is Washington correspondent for The Nation.
Recently 3,000 people went to see First Lady Michelle Obama speak at Bradley Tech High School. Do you think President Barack Obama will win the 2012 Presidential Election? Why or why not?
Question and photos by Yvonne Kemp
James Lindsay: “I believe Barack Obama will be re-elected because most people understand that the economy is in its current state due to the last administration and that it will take at least two terms for it to be corrected.
Markel Johnson: “He will be elected because a lot of people who say they oppose him publicly will support him at the ballot box because he is looking out for their best interest.”
Laviena Davis: “The Lord had his hand on President Obama. My senior companions and I are praying that God will do a miracle.”
Beverly Brown: “I think he will be elected. People have to realize that he had a lot of housekeeping to do when he was elected and he (has done) a lot for the people (considering) the mess everything was in when he took office.”
President Paul Kagame has lashed out at Western countries and international organisations, saying they are the cause of the ongoing crisis in the eastern part of the Democratic Republic of Congo. Kagame’s statements come after a U.S. decision to cut military aid to the country after a UN finding that the government backed rebels in the eastern DRC.
WASHINGTON (CBSDC) – Academy Award-winning actor Morgan Freeman does not recognize President Barack Obama as the nation’s first black president.
Speaking to NPR last week, the actor who starred in “Driving Miss Daisy” and “The Shawshank Redemption” said Obama should not be called the first black president because he’s of mixed race
Freeman also told NPR that he believes the Republican Party purposely refuses to help the president.
“He is being purposely, purposely thwarted by the Republican Party, who started out at the beginning of his tenure by saying, ‘We are going to do whatever is necessary to make sure that he’s only going to serve one term,’” Freeman told NPR. “That means they will not cooperate with him on anything. So to say he’s ineffective is a misappropriation of the facts.”
Freeman won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in 2004 for “Million Dollar Baby.”
By D.L. Chandler (newsone.com)
Rev. Jeremiah Wright (pictured), the former spiritual adviser to President Barack Obama, made headlines over the weekend for delivering an angry sermon just a scant few miles from the White House.
Speaking at the Florida Avenue Baptist Church on Sunday, Rev. Wright once again aimed harsh words toward the White political establishment and was critical of African Americans who studied at predominately White universities and colleges. A one-time friend and ally of Obama’s, could Wright’s outburst reignite a feud between the men during a critical moment in the election cycle?
“As we celebrate the foundations of our future, this is not a time to romanticize because we have the first African-descended president in the White House,” Wright said during his Sunday sermon at the church that celebrates its 100th anniversary this week. “You see what the tea party is trying to do.”
Wright would add, “We need to tell our children how we got from a Black congressman named Adam Clayton Powell to a black president named Barack Hussein Obama. But we also need to tell them how we have Black politicians who steal money.”
Perhaps the sharpest digs that may have been aimed toward the president were also the most tongue-in-cheek references made. Referring to Blacks who were raised in White society as “biscuits” and “sheep dogs,” Rev. Wright’s words were not minced.
“Take that baby, him or her away from the African mother, away from the African community, away from the African experience and put them Africans over at the breasts of Yale, Harvard, University of Chicago, UCLA, or UC Berkeley,” Wright said.
“Turn them into biscuits. Let them get that alien DNA all up inside their brain and they will turn on their own people in defense of the ones who are keeping their own people under oppression. Sheep dogs.”
It should be noted that President Obama attended law school at Harvard.
Rev. Wright’s politics are known to the media, especially to conservative pundits who sought to attach his rhetoric to Obama’s initial election campaign back in 2008. The meltdown of the pair’s relationship has been fodder for critics of the president and this surely will drum up much of that same talk considering the stakes in November.
The question that hangs in the air after Wright’s sermon is this: Could his timing have been any worse considering the poll numbers show a tight race between Obama and the presumptive GOP candidate Mitt Romney?
Another question that can and should be posed is whether or not Wright’s stance will have any effect on Black voters as fall quickly approaches.
Lastly, is Rev. Wright within his rights to speak critically of African-Americans who seek higher education at vaunted institutions? Wouldn’t that be limiting the potential of a young person? It appears that in this instance of blurting out his feelings, Rev. Wright has once again proven that some thoughts are better left censored or unsaid. By no means should Rev. Wright be held from speaking openly about the Black experience or not to be critical of Obama, but was the church pulpit the best place to address his concerns? Probably not.
It may be too early to tell, but those keeping a close eye on the election should expect the White House’s communication staff to handle this issue swiftly and create as much distance as possible between Obama and Wright. While it would be brave for Obama to directly address Wright by name, it would also serve to be politically foolish.
What do you think?