Tags: president barack obama | fiascos | white house

Obama's 15 Worst Fiascos Since Entering White House

Obama's 15 Worst Fiascos Since Entering White House
(Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images, file)

By    |   Tuesday, 06 January 2015 01:29 PM

President Barack Obama's sixth year in office produced enough crises and cringe-worthy moments to fill a datebook.

As 2015 ramps up, Newsmax reflects on serial snafus, and the president's struggles in recent history.

1. Obamacare: The Affordable Care Act's woes started in late 2013 with an ailing website and lingered into 2014, costing a cabinet secretary her job, deflating Democrats, and influencing elections.

The agita returned after Nov. 4 when ACA consultant Jonathan Gruber was caught gloating on video about the "stupidity" of voters, and how he put one over on congressional budget analysts by hiding the legislation's tax hikes.

Obamacare remains unpopular with that "stupid" electorate, and faces its next life-or-death test before the Supreme Court in March.

2. The VA: Another government-run health operation, the Department of Veterans Affairs, nearly imploded last spring when news broke of falsified patient waiting lists and deadly appointment delays at military hospitals.

That scandal also led a cabinet secretary to resign amid multiple sackings at VA facilities, and cast doubt on whether big government could do anything right.

3. Ebola: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention completed 2014's healthcare disaster trifecta. When Ebola spread to America this year, CDC chief Tom Frieden tried to sound reassuring — and then Dallas hospital workers using CDC protocols for treating Ebola patients got infected.

Enter the administration's "Ebola czar," Democratic fixer Ron Klain, whose brief political-medical residency ends in March. Frieden, remarkably, has kept his job.

4. The Border: The White House appeared surprised by a mid-year surge of migrants — including thousands of children, many unaccompanied — who poured across the Texas border in a mass flight from troubled Central American countries.

Critics suggested Obama had effectively invited all comers with his 2012 executive order favoring children of undocumented migrants. Meanwhile, border agents struggled to house and feed the arrivals in what looked like a humanitarian crisis of the administration's own making.

5. Executive Amnesty: The president delivered on his threat to "act" in the absence of an immigration bill, and promptly alienated most of Congress — this time with a decree allowing 5 million immigrants here illegally to begin receiving visas and work permits.

The move raised the specter of a constitutional crisis, and pushed the government perilously close to another budget shutdown in December as some Republicans in Congress fought to defund the measure.

6. ISIS: The radical Islamists that Obama dismissed in January as a junior varsity terror squad proved to be more vicious and capable than the president had allowed.

Today, the Islamic State, aka ISIS or ISIL or Daesh, represents the greatest foreign policy crisis in a decade. Their rampage across Iraq and Syria forced the U.S. military back into the region, and made Obama's complete troop withdrawal from Iraq in 2011 look as shortsighted as his "JV" jihadis crack.

7. Golf War: ISIS demonstrated its barbarity in August by releasing a video in which a masked killer decapitated an American prisoner, journalist James Foley. As the country looked on, Obama gave a stern speech condemning Foley's murder — and then went golfing.

"I should've anticipated the optics," the president would later say in regard to the furor that greeted his links jaunt, as if appearances were the only issue.

8. Bowe Bergdahl: The swap of an American prisoner of war, alleged Army deserter Bowe Bergdahl, for five Taliban commanders left soldiers in Bergdahl's Afghanistan unit stunned.

It also earned the administration a rebuke from the non-partisan Government Accountability Office, which declared the deal illegal and a misuse of Pentagon funds.

Bergdahl's fate will be decided by an Army general who is reviewing the findings of an investigation into his disappearance.

9. Israel: At a time of rising volatility in the Middle East, the president oversaw a toxic turn of relations with America's most dependable regional ally.

Unnamed White House advisers were quoted calling Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu a "chickens**t " and a "coward," and the administration considered sanctions against Israel over housing construction in the occupied West Bank. With friends like these . . .

10. Iran: If the world wakes up to discover that Iran has joined the nuclear club, it may have this administration to thank for a string of concessions and delays in service of a toothless non-proliferation deal.

Even Senate Democrats are threatening to derail any treaty, and the Iranians themselves feel so on top of the situation they've taken to openly mocking Obama as "the weakest of U.S. presidents."

11. Russia: 2014 might be remembered as the launch of Cold War 2.0. Undeterred by harsh words from the U.S. State Department, President Vladimir Putin annexed the Crimea and sent Soviet — er, Russian — troops to back the Ukrainian separatists fighting Kiev's pro-Western government.

12. North Korea: A hermit kingdom too impoverished to keep its lights on managed to hack a major U.S. movie studio, Sony, and dump a cache of emails that embarrassed the Democratic party's Hollywood friends.

Memo to the president: When a lunatic regime that's the butt of jokes — and movies — beats the world's leading technological power at cyber war, someone else winds up looking like the punchline.

13. IRS: Sticklers for record-keeping when it comes to the rest of us, the IRS said thousands of emails were lost forever after they were subpoenaed for a congressional probe into the tax agency's scrutiny of conservatives.

In fact, computer experts later recovered some 30,000 emails to and from a former official, Lois Lerner, who insisted, "I didn't do anything wrong." Say that at your next audit and see what happens.

14. Race Relations: The president who campaigned as the embodiment of post-racial, enlightened America presided over a country gripped by old hostilities and, in Ferguson, Missouri, public protests that literally went up in flames.

Critics argued that Obama himself, along with Attorney General Eric Holder, fueled the antagonism with biased pronouncements on policing and race, and by giving credence to a polarizing publicity-seeker like the Rev. Al Sharpton.

15. Midterm Election: In October, the president said that his "policies are on the ballot" — a remark that made endangered Democrats wince as hard as any mention of his name in their home states.

Obama did not have a pithy new word for what happened next — a second "shellacking" for him and his party on Nov. 4, as voters handed the Senate to Republicans and padded the GOP's House majority. He merely observed that his opponents had had "a good night," and then behaved as if nothing was amiss — see "executive amnesty."

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President Barack Obama's sixth year in office produced enough crises and cringe-worthy moments to fill a datebook. As 2015 ramps up, Newsmax reflects on serial snafus, and the president's struggles in recent history.
president barack obama, fiascos, white house
Tuesday, 06 January 2015 01:29 PM
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