By Camisha Jones
The election of Barack Obama as President in 2008 was a historic first for our country. His re-election is just as remarkable given that no Democratic President since Franklin D. Roosevelt has won more than 50% of the vote in consecutive elections. No President since 1940 has been re-elected in a time when the unemployment rate was over 7.5%. Perhaps his success is rooted in his record. In his first term, his administration tripled the number of women on the Supreme Court, ended the war in Iraq, revived the auto industry, and enacted the Affordable Care Act. When he took office in 2009, our country was losing 800,000 jobs each month. By December 2012, America was in the midst of 34 months of continuous job growth, accounting for 5.8 million new jobs in the private sector. To build on his administration’s accomplishments, President Obama has set some ambitious goals for his second term. Many here in Richmond are wishing the President well in his efforts to move our country forward.
PRESIDENT BARACK OBAMA’S 5 POINT PLAN FOR HIS 2ND TERM
Make Education and Training a National Priority
Some Ways He Plans To Do It: Obama’s administration will set a path to cutting college tuition and fee increases in half over the next 10 years; help state and local governments avoid cutting jobs for teachers; give states the flexibility to create their own reform plans and relieving them of No Child Left Behind mandates; and invest in community colleges to offer education and career-training programs.
Build on our Manufacturing Boom
Some Ways He Plans To Do It: The administration aims to create 1 million new manufacturing jobs by 2016 and to double American exports over the next 5 years.
Boost American-Made Energy
Some Ways He Plans To Do It: President Obama intends to lay the groundwork to cut net oil imports in half (5.5 million barrels per day) by 2020. Rather than continuing government subsidies for oil companies, Obama plans to invest more in domestic production of cleaner energy sources.
Reduce the Deficits Responsibly
Some Ways He Plans To Do It: Aiming to decrease the deficit by more than $4 trillion over the next ten years, President Obama will ask millionaires and billionaires to pay a bit more in tax. For every dollar in increased revenue, President Obama’s existing budget plan includes $2.50 in spending cuts.
End the War in Afghanistan and Nation-Build Here at Home
Some Ways He Plans To Do It: Intending to end the war in Afghanistan in 2014, President Obama plans to utilize the money no longer being spent on war to pay down the debt and to create jobs rebuilding America’s roads, bridges, runways and schools.
More information on Obama’s plans is available at www.barackobama.com.
Any president of the United States that is successful in being elected to a second term has earned their place in history. But to have the first African American President earn this distinction is particularly admirable. Regardless of your political affiliation or political point of view, credit must be given where credit is due and 2012 was a historic watershed year in American politics and American history. ALL young people should be inspired and understand that BIG DREAMS can come when it involves: a worthy goal, a good team, a good plan and hard work.
Kym D. Grinnage
Vice President- General Manager of NBC12, WWBT, Richmond, Virginia
Dear Mr. President, the citizens of this country have once again affirmed you as our leader and my only hope is that you remain firm in your convictions. Greatness can only occur when our leaders have undeniable faith in those convictions and act accordingly on behalf of the people they serve. My prayer is that in the face of constant adversity, scrutiny and doubt, you would be so bold. Greatness is in us, because it is in you.
Executive Director of Peter Paul Development Center
My grandfather used to say “to whom much is given much is expected”. As we celebrate your inauguration, Mr. President, I ask that you will remember all of the people who labored to make this day a reality. Remember all of those who worked to create a more perfect union through building institutions and structures that sustain the promise of the United States of America, and all of those who continue to labor to make that promise a reality. Thank you for your efforts to be a fair and just leader. It is only through inclusive leadership that we can create inclusive communities and a thriving nation.
Allison M. Conyers
Director of Education & Training of Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities
President Obama, Congratulations…if I may offer three thoughts: 1. KNOW that you are prayed for – weekly, DAILY even; if the election showed anything it showed that there are more people FOR YOU than against you. 2. Be true to yourself; follow that inner compass that served as the starting place for your calling and true election. 3. FINALLY, Let these be the words that you hear when you look in the mirror: GREAT men overcome even greater adversity to accomplish humanity’s greatest good.
Uzziah Anthony Harris
Pastor of A New U…A New Chance
Mr. President, I am thankful we have re-elected you as the President of the United States and Commander and Chief of our armed forces. I have faith in your ability to lead us through the challenging days ahead, to represent us to the people of the world and to formulate a vision for our future. I pray for you everyday and because I believe, I have a blessed assurance that our best days are yet to come.
Tawnya Pettiford-Wates, Ph.D.
Founder & Artistic Director of The Conciliation Project
Dear Mr. President — the responsibilities of the presidency have transcended Commander and Chief, and now includes Chief Visionary. Our community has a new face of possibility. The charge and challenge of the next four years is to reduce the inequalities of Black Economics and increase Entrepreneurship and Business Development through access to capital, training and education. The time is now; the future is now. We stand at a grand precipice to educate, empower and employ.
Shemicia L. Bowen
President of Urban League of Greater Richmond Young Professionals Network
Woodrow Wilson once said “a man is not so big as his belief in himself. He is as big as the number of people who believe in him.” Mr. President, as you lead us through these challenging times, I hope you draw encouragement from the support and prayers of so many across the country who believe in you. Many of us rest easier knowing you wake up every morning trying to make this world a safer and better place for us.
Jennifer L. McClellan
Virginia House of Delegates, 71st District
“The president of the United States is the Honorary Chair of the American Red Cross, so I am pleased that President Obama will continue to inspire us as we strive to bring hope to people in need when they are faced with trauma in the wake of natural disasters and emergencies. I believe he has genuine empathy for the plight of others. Our nation has been enriched by his intelligent and caring leadership.”
CEO of American Red Cross Virginia Capital Region