by Countable | 3.20.17
President Barack Obama’s second term as president is drawing to a close, and he spent much of his final year in office trying to advance his policies through collaborating on legislation with Congress when possible or by taking executive action while building his legacy internationally.
With a very eventful 2016 now in the record books and the final days of Obama’s presidency ticking away, we looked back at some of the major events, bills, and regulations that have come to pass in the last year.
January 5, 2016: President Obama issued an executive order requiring all gun dealers to be licensed and conduct background checks, even if they’re selling firearms online and at gun shows.
January 12, 2016: Obama delivered his final State of the Union Address to a joint session of Congress.
February 13, 2016: Following the death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, Obama released a statement offering his condolences and notifying the Senate that he would nominate a successor in due time.
February 23, 2016: In an effort to make good on a pledge from his 2008 campaign, Obama provided Congress with a plan to close the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba that is used to detainee terror suspects. His plan would bring detainees who are too dangerous release to prisons within the U.S., while other remaining detainees would be transferred to other countries.
March 16, 2016: Obama nominated Merrick Garland to serve as an associate justice of the U.S. Supreme Court in place of the late Antonin Scalia.
March 20-22, 2016: Obama becomes the first sitting U.S. president to visit Cuba since Calvin Coolidge in 1928. During his trip, he held meetings with Cuban President Raul Castro, delivered an address to the Cuban people, and attended a baseball game with Castro.
April 22, 2016: In a joint press conference with British Prime Minister David Cameron, Obama joined Cameron in telling British voters that the U.K. should remain in the European Union ahead of the "Brexit" vote on June 23, 2016.
May 15, 2016: Obama delivered a commencement speech entitled "Ignorance is not a Virtue" at Rutgers University in New Jersey.
May 25-27, 2016: Obama visited Japan to attend the G7 summit and meet with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. He capped his trip by becoming the first sitting U.S. president to visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, where he met with survivors of the atomic bombing and called for an end to nuclear weapons without apologizing for America’s use of the bomb in World War II.
June 9, 2016: An hour after meeting with Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) President Obama endorsed Sanders’s rival Hillary Clinton for president, saying of his former Secretary of State that "I don’t think there’s ever been someone so qualified to hold this office."
June 24, 2016: Following the U.K.’s decision to leave the European Union, President Obama said in a speech at an entrepreneurship summit that the Special Relationship between the U.S. and U.K. is "enduring" and that relations with Britain, NATO, and the EU will remain indispensable.
July 7-8, 2016: On July 7, President Obama commented on the shootings of Alton Sterling and Philando Castile which had sparked protests and allegations of racial injustice by police officers. The following day, five Dallas police officers were killed in what Obama called "a vicious, calculated and despicable attack on law enforcement."
July 27, 2016: President Obama delivers a keynote address at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia.
August 6-21, 2016: The Obama family vacation in Martha’s Vineyard, Massachusetts for the sixth and final time during his presidency.
September 28, 2016: Congress voted to override Obama’s veto of legislation allowing the families of victims of the September 11 attacks to sue Saudi Arabia over its alleged role in assisting the attackers.
November 10, 2016: Obama hosted President-elect Donald Trump at the White House to discuss the presidential transition, and called the meeting "excellent."
November 15-16, 2016: For his final state visit, President Obama visited Greece and with the country’s prime minister to discuss the Greek debt crisis in addition to the European migrant crisis.
November 23, 2016: A federal judge blocks an Obama administration regulation that would allow salaried employees whose annual earnings fall below $47,476 to receive overtime in addition to their salaries. The rule had been slated to take effect on December 1, 2016 and the administration hasn’t yet said whether it will challenge the ruling.
December 6, 2016: In his final national security speech, President Obama again called for the closure of the military prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and that terrorism is a long-term challenge which must be confronted with the help of international coalitions.
December 16, 2016: President Obama held his final press conference of the year before leaving with his family aboard Air Force One for their annual holiday vacation in Hawaii.
December 19, 2016: The Obama administration announced new regulations to prevent or minimize the impact of coal mining on surface water and groundwater.
December 20, 2016: The Obama administration announced new rules blocking offshore drilling for oil and gas in portions of the Arctic and Atlantic Ocean.
December 27, 2016: Obama visited the U.S.S. Arizona Memorial with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who became the first Japanese leader to visit Pearl Harbor and honor the Americans who died there.
December 31, 2016: A federal judge blocked an Obama administration regulation that would prohibit discrimination in healthcare on the basis of "gender identity" and “termination of pregnancy” because of religious freedom reasons. The administration hasn’t yet announced if it would challenge the ruling.
January 10, 2017: Obama is scheduled to deliver a farewell address to the nation from Chicago, Illinois in the evening, with a time to be announced.
January 20, 2017: Obama’s term as president will end at noon in Washington D.C. when President-elect Donald Trump is sworn in as the 45th President of the United States.
— Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: Public Domain
Written by Countable
Oh what you might have accomplished if it weren't for the hateful GOP!
You are going to be missed President Obama. Thank you for everything you have done and thank you for being persistent even when hateful republicans prevented you from carrying out your duties.
I believe that the President is in the top 3 presidents we have ever had .......
As a white female woman living in South Texas it has never been the cool thing to vote Democratic. This is after all the home of the straight ticket Republican. I have voted Democratic in every election except for w's first term. Forgive me hahaha. I have never been so proud to vote Democratic as I was both times for Obama. I would love to think him for the things he has been able to accomplish even with the Republicans blocking him at every step. He will be sorely missed.
I'm lucky to have lived through the Obama presidency. What an amazingly intelligent, dignified, and selfless man. Even with everything he had to deal with he accomplished so much. It's unfortunate that even though the majority of Americans want a democrat to replace him, we are left with that orange blob of a psychopath to run our country. I wouldn't even give it the respect to call it a Republican. I hope Obama continues to fight the good fight with the rest of us.
Thank you President Obama and thank you for the good fight!
Obama for a third term!
Thanks for everything, President Obama. Whatever happens next, at least we had a great president these past eight years.
I will be 64 yo next week and I can't remember a president having more difficult decisions to make, and right out of the starting gate. I don't agree with everything he did or didn't do but overall he was articulate, dignified and competent and had to deal with more lack of respect than any other president in recent memory and we should be ashamed of that.
DONT LEAVE US WID TRUMP. C'mon bruh!!
What more could have been done if there was a majority Democratic Congress. Pitiful.
Sorry liberals, but the only date worth remembering is JANUARY 20, 2017 - THE END OF AN ERROR! My biggest regret is that Congress didn't IMPEACH OBAMA AND THROW HIS SORRY BUTT INTO PRISON! I just hope and pray that Americans never forget all the damage he has done to our country! WHAT A NIGHTMARE! I never want to see the United States of America come so close again to becoming a socialist cesspool! WE NEED TO CONTINUE THE FIGHT AGAINST SOCIALISM, COMMUNISM, GLOBALISM, AND ANYTHING ELSE THAT THREATENS OUR REPUBLIC, OUR CONSTITUTION, OUR FREEDOM, AND OUR SOVEREIGNTY!! MAKE NO MISTAKE - THESE WERE GIFTS FROM GOD, AND THEY MADE AMERICA THE GREATEST NATION IN THE WORLD! WE'D BE FOOLS TO ALLOW SOME DICTATOR(S) TO TAKE THEM AWAY FROM US AND ENSLAVE US AND OUR CHILDREN, TO BE EXPLOITED TO SATISFY HIS/HER/THEIR OWN LUST FOR POWER!!! GOD BLESS THE U.S.A.!!!
Most exciting days in the last eight years. I cannot wait until January 20th! The end of an error!
Don't let the door hit you where the good lord split you
I am looking forward to the midterm election. I will miss President Obama and the good he has done for this country. However, I look forward to working with my state and local elected officials to ensure that the legislation President Obama passed surrounding the ACA, safety net programming as well as legislation to ensure the safety and well being of me, my family and your other constituents are protected because I understand that my vote matters, my voice matters and my life matters. Look forward to working with you.
This administration was among the worst when it came to eroding American liberty. Extrajudicial killings of American citizens, rampant spying, and supporting a cultural crackdown on free speech should be in the conversation as we judge him. Not to mention bombing more countries and deporting more illegal immigrants than Bush.
Imagine if Obama didn't lock out the Republicans during his first term and didn't ostracize them at every opportunity. The politics of dividing people was his undoing. So sad and so unnecessary. The Democrat party has been thrown out at every level of government as a result of their divisive and destructive politics.
Im sorry what has he done for this country? Seriously what!? Other than I have never seen this much racial divide since the 1960s. Our debt is ridiculous...don't even try to blame Bush, Obama had ample time to try and stop the bleeding but only caused more debt. He has caused medical costs to sky rocket with his so called affordable care act. Like we were told when Obama became president...."Give him a chance!"
I can't wait to see them gone!