As the End Approaches, More Than Ever, I Realize How Much I’ll Miss President Obama’s Leadership

Even though we’ve all known that the end was near, reality has begun to set in that we’re about to go from a well-spoken, intelligent and thoughtful leader in President Obama, to a thin-skinned, vile, petulant buffoon like Donald Trump. It’s still mind-boggling to think about the fact that there were tens of millions of people who were stupid enough to vote for Trump. We’re going from a highly educated Constitutional scholar to a con man who mocks people with disabilities, belittles veterans and brags about being a sexual predator.

As the nightmare we’re all about to face sets in, the sadness of how much I’m going to miss President Obama has fully set in.

We’re in the midst of an historic streak of private sector job creation; unemployment has been cut in half; we passed health care reform; Osama bin Ladin is dead; homosexuals can now serve openly in the military; same-sex marriage is legal; we saved the American auto industry – among many other bits of progress – and we’ve done all this while Republicans in Congress have done everything they possibly could to sabotage this president.

While all presidents from either party experience congressional obstruction from the opposition party, we’ve never seen blatant attempts to undermine a president and the country like we’ve seen with Republicans during Obama’s time in the White House. Hell, Republicans even went as far as to try to embarrass him on an international stage by trying to subvert his foreign policy, doing just about everything they could to prevent the Iran nuclear deal from being agreed upon.

Though despite all of this, President Obama prevailed practically every… single… time.

Whether it was Republicans trying to use the debt ceiling as a means of extortion, or a government shutdown to try to block his signature health care law, he always got the better of those who put petty partisan politics ahead of what was best for the country.

Even though I’m sure Hillary Clinton would have made a great president, she would have never been President Obama. Not only has he been a great president, but he made being president look “cool.” A gifted, witty, funny speaker who’s probably one of the most intelligent presidents we’ve ever had. While I haven’t agreed with everything he’s done, I never felt like he was going to embarrass the country the way George W. Bush did on countless occasions through his eight years in office, or the way Donald Trump already has. President Obama didn’t make all the right decisions, but even when he made the wrong move, I never felt like he did so because he was an idiot.

However, in his successor, I see a man whose incompetence, alone, has already pushed us closer to WIII than we’ve been in decades.

So as the final few days of President Obama’s time in office tick down, I’m slightly depressed to know that it’s almost over. Under his watch, we’ve seen issues like gay rights, climate change, health care and equality for women make huge strides. Even though he wasn’t able to accomplish nearly as much as he would have liked to – because voters let him down when he needed a Congress that would work with him – I do believe that when all is said and done, history is going to look back upon Barack Obama as one of our better presidents.

It sickens me to know that many of the great things he was able to accomplish are going to be undone in a matter of days/weeks by a traitor who praises our enemies while attacking our own intelligence officials.

And it’s clear I’m not the only one who feels this way. As the 2016 election went on, his approval numbers continued to improve. With an approval rating of 56 percent, Obama’s rating is 22 points higher than George W. Bush’s was at the end of his presidency. So with an improving approval rating, hitting levels he hasn’t seen in years, it seems that quite a few Americans are starting to appreciate the president a whole lot more based upon his disastrous replacement.

Call me a “fanboy,” or an “infatuated Obama lover” – that’s fine. I never claimed he was perfect and I never will. But one thing I realized during the very long and grueling 2016 presidential election — and especially after digesting the results of it — is that I’m really going to miss President Obama.

Allen Clifton

Allen Clifton is a native Texan who now lives in the Austin area. He has a degree in Political Science from Sam Houston State University. Allen is a co-founder of Forward Progressives and creator of the popular Right Off A Cliff column and Facebook page. Be sure to follow Allen on Twitter and Facebook, and subscribe to his channel on YouTube as well.


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