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Obama Turns His Sights to Asia

Friday, 05 November 2010 09:09 AM

President Obama embarks Friday on a foreign trip focused on Asian nations that he believes are essential to the recovery of a stumbling U.S. economy, just days after voters anxious over the lack of jobs dealt Democrats a stinging defeat, The Washington Post reports.

Presidents often emphasize foreign policy during difficult political times at home, and Obama's only extended foray outside the country this year will take him to a quartet of democracies where he is viewed more favorably than he is in the United States.

But among his challenges will be convincing his counterparts in Asia and at two economic summits that he has not been weakened politically by the midterm setback and that issues such as free trade, a divisive subject within the Democratic Party, remain central to his ambitions in the region.

"He'll look pretty beaten up," said Douglas H. Paal, a National Security Council official for Asia in the Reagan and George H.W. Bush administrations who is vice president of studies at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. "But the practical reality is that the president of the United States is a big deal - defeated in an election or not."

The fact that Obama has chosen Asia represents a far-reaching policy decision that the administration does not want lost on the countries he will visit.

Read the entire story at washingtonpost.com

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obama asia india trip
Friday, 05 November 2010 09:09 AM
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