President Barack Obama speaks in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington, Monday, April 15, 2013, following the explosions at the Boston Marathon. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
Much can be said about President Barack Obama‘s second-term, and there are critics on both sides of the aisle that have not been shy in voicing their various opinions. Obama’s fifth year has been marked with various ups and downs, but still markedly better than his predecessors who fared far worse.
Yet, with the bumps and snags along the way there still exist several key moments of President Obama’s presidency as we approach the end of 2013.
NewsOne takes a look at some of President Obama’s Top Moments Of 2013 below.
Owning and Correcting Mistakes With Obamacare
The open enrollment period for the Affordable Care Act was not the smoothest roll-out in years, but much should be said about the president owning his administration’s mistakes and working to correct them. In the time since October 1, the administration and the Health Department have made strides to correct HealthCare.gov and promote awareness regarding the Heath Care Marketplace on the state and local level.
Obama Continues Strong Stance On Gun Control
After the horrific shooting incident at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., President Obama has become a sturdy voice calling for gun control. Back in September, the president addressed the nation in the aftermath of the Washington Navy Yard shooting. Despite a rallying cry amongst pro-gun advocates, Obama asked a nation to come together on the issue in a sensible fashion.
With the anniversary of the shooting taking place this month, the president used his weekly address to call for stricter laws regarding gun purchases and support for those in need of mental health support.
Obama Deftly Handled The Debt-Ceiling Crisis Of 2013
The showdown between the Obama administration and the GOP over the debt-ceiling default showed that the president had the gall to stand his ground. With help from the Democrat-led Senate and a show of support in the House, the president’s leadership was key in averting threats from the GOP and caused the surging party to back down.
President Didn’t Budge During Federal Shutdown
A collective of Congressional Republicans banded together in response to their disapproval of the Affordable Care Act and other matters coming from the White House. In a bid to make a power grab and pressure President Obama to concede, Congressional Democrats rallied behind the president and the GOP lost another battle.
Economy Has Improved To Its Best Levels Since 2005
President Obama came to power during a turbulent financial period for the country. With slow but steady gains, the economy has improved to its best levels since 2005, and the second best since the glory years of the Clinton administration in 1999.
Obama’s Focus On Foreign Policy Matters Proved Key
Obama helped broker an international deal with Syria to do away with chemical weapons, staving off further significant damage to the war-torn region. Administration officials also struck a deal along with other global leaders that led to a compromise with Iran and its production of nuclear weapons. Lastly, the administration brokered a series of peace talks with embittered foes Israel and Palestine, with Secretary of State John Kerry remaining hopeful may be reached by spring.
Reauthorizing The Violence Against Women Act
A law that was signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1994, the Violence Against Women Act was reauthorized by President Obama despite heavy opposition from Congressional Republicans. The law was allowed to expire in 2011, and a year-long fight to reauthorize the act went underway.
The Administration’s Commitment To Education Reform
President Obama has preached the value of education since entering office, and has fought to make the process of obtaining a college degree an easier task. This summer, the president’s nationwide “A Better Bargain For The Middle Class” campaign introduced policy changes that will aid prospective students who wish to enroll in college and make it more affordable.