All Presidents have their achievements and disappointments. President Obama is no different in that department. Certainly in his first days in office, much of what he and his team did to stop the tailspin our economy was in will certainly be counted as one of the successes. You could probably also put the ACA, improvements in women’s rights, and LGBT rights would most definitely be in there, too.
In Cleveland yesterday, President Obama was asked about his regrets and one issue rose to the surface.
The President regrets not closing the prison that was meant for terrorists captured in Afghanistan and Iraq. He lamented about how the politics and rhetoric surrounding the potential closing stalled any plans he had:
We had a bipartisan agreement that it should be closed. . . and I thought we had enough consensus there that we could do it in a more deliberate fashion,” Obama said. “But the politics of it got tough and people got scared by the rhetoric around it, and once that set in then the path of least resistance was just leave it open even though it’s not who we are as a country.
Obama has attempted to renew his pledge in the last two State of the Union addresses; last year the renewed effort was quickly thwarted by Congress. This year, since the SOTU there has been no concrete action taken, but Obama has managed to transfer many of the detainees out of the prison in the last three months. Something he can do without getting completely stonewalled by the GOP Congress.
Watch President Obama explain what happened: