Jeff is a computer professional who takes a great interest in politics and tries to always distinguish fact from opinion.
Obama's Presidency: The Facts
People have many perceptions of how the US economy or the country as a whole has done during the Obama years. Depending on your political views, you may think the country did exceptionally well or was teetering on the verge of collapse.
Listed below are fourteen objective facts, without interjected opinion, about the state of America under the leadership of President Obama. Every statement is followed up with a link to a reputable source where you can verify the fact for yourself.
1. We Had a Record 90 Straight Months of Economic Expansion
That’s right: For ninety consecutive months, the US economy got progressively better. That includes a new record for consecutive months of private-sector job growth. Forbes magazine (which is no fan of President Obama) crunched the numbers and demonstrated how the economic recovery under President Obama was better in just about every measurable way than the recovery under President Reagan.
Source: Obama Out-Performs Reagan on Jobs, Growth, and Investing; Forbes magazine.
2. We Enjoyed the Longest Period of Private-Sector Job Creation in American History
This statistic also comes from the Forbes magazine article listed above. In fact, during Obama's presidency, we enjoyed 75 straight months of private-sector job creation. That is the longest period of job creation since the Department of Labor has been keeping statistics.
Source: Obama’s Claim That Businesses Are in the "Longest Uninterrupted Stretch of Job Creation": The Washington Post.
Source: A Record 75 Straight Months of Job Growth Under Obama: Money
3. Unemployment Dropped From 10.1% in October of 2009 to 4.8% by Early 2017
Not only did the unemployment rate drop significantly, but after the recession ended, the US economy gained over thirteen million new jobs. (You can refer to the Forbes article above or check the article below.)
Source: Democratic Presidents Bring It: Obama Shatters Clinton’s Record For Private Sector Job Growth: PoliticusUsa.
It is also worth noting that during the 2012 presidential election, Obama's opponent, Mitt Romney, promised to lower the unemployment rate to 6% by the end of 2016. President Obama exceeded that goal by lowering unemployment to under 6% two full years earlier than Romney had promised.
Source: Romney vows to lower unemployment to 6% by the end of 2016: The Hill
4. The Stock Market Set Record Highs Throughout Obama's Presidency
From early 2009 onward, there was a steady upward trend in stock market growth as the economy continued to improve. The Dow Jones Industrial averages reached an all-time high of 18,292 in May, 2015. Since most Americans have 401K retirement investments in the stock market, this growth benefited millions of middle-class Americans.
Source: Dow Jones Industrial Average Last 10 Years: Macrotrends.
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5. The Federal Budget Deficit Was Reduced by Two-Thirds Since 2009.
The $1.4 trillion federal budget deficit that Obama inherited in 2009 was in a large part due to the high rate of unemployment and the downturn in the economy. When millions of people were put out of work in 2008 and 2009, it resulted in far fewer income taxes and less economic activity to generate federal revenue. As millions of people regained employment, there were billions more in tax dollars generated. As a result, the deficit got smaller each year. The 2015 deficit was $439 billion, the smallest deficit since 2007, and roughly 70% lower than it was in 2009.
Source: What is the Deficit?: USGovernmentSpending.com.
6. Under President Obama, Government Spending Increased Less Than It Did Under President's Bush and Reagan
You may have heard critics say that President Obama is spending money wildly and running up our debt. According to this article from Forbes, during his first term, Obama increased spending by 1.4% annually, far less than President Reagan (8.7%) or George W. Bush (8.1%). According to another article from the Washington Post, Obama increased spending 3.3% annually. In any event, Obama increased spending less than any president since Eisenhower.
Sources: Who Is the Smallest Government Spender Since Eisenhower? Would You Believe It's Barack Obama? Forbes magazine.
The Facts About the Growth of Spending Under Obama: Washington Post.
7. For 95% of American Taxpayers, Income Taxes Dropped as Low or Lower Than Any Point in the Previous 50 Years
After President Obama took office, thousands of Tea Party members all over the country held rallies protesting Obama’s tax increases. At that time, President Obama had actually passed several tax cuts to stimulate the economy. Most of the Tea Partiers who were protesting had only seen their taxes decrease under Obama, yet polls indicated that most Tea Party members wrongly believed their taxes had gone up.
In fact, the only people whose income taxes went up during Obama’s presidency were those making $400,000 per year or more. That's less than 2% of the population. For the vast majority of people, tax rates were lower or the same as when Obama first took office. The article below from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities explains this in greater detail.
Source: Federal Income Taxes on Middle-Income Families Remain Near Historic Lows, Center on Budget and Policy Priorities.
8. Dependence on Foreign Oil Was Greatly Reduced Due to Record Domestic Oil Production and Improved Fuel Efficiency Standards
While some claim that oil production declined under President Obama, the truth is just the opposite. Oil production reached record highs. The United States produces so much oil that we export more oil and gasoline than we import.
9. At Least 18 Million More Americans Now Have Health Insurance Than Before
Depending on whose numbers you use, anywhere from 12 to 18 million Americans acquired health insurance due to the Affordable Care Act. Now that those millions of Americans have insurance, the rest of us are no longer on the hook to pay for their healthcare when they get sick. This saves the American people billions of dollars in the long run.
Source: Obamacare Helped Up to 10 Million Get Insurance, Gallup Finds: NBC News.
10. The Affordable Care Act Has Added Years to the Life of Medicare
The Medicare trust fund had been on course to run out of money by the end of 2016. But due to cost savings from the Affordable Care Act and lower healthcare expenses, Medicare’s trust fund was able to remain stable until the year 2030 without cutting benefits.
Source: Medicare, Social Security Disability Fund Headed in Different Directions; The Wall Street Journal.
11. Since Passage of the Affordable Care Act, We Are Seeing the Slowest Rate of Increase in Healthcare Costs Since 1960
Healthcare costs will always go up, but contrary to Republican predictions, healthcare costs increased at a much slower pace since the passage of the ACA.
12. We Had Fewer Soldiers, Sailors, and Airmen in War Zones Than at Any Time in the Previous 12 Years
By the end of his presidency, with the end of the Iraq war and the steady withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan, we had far fewer people in war zones than any time since 2002.
13. There Were Zero Successful Attacks by al Qaeda on US Soil While Obama Was President
Despite Dick Cheney’s warning that if voters elected a Democrat as president, we’d be “hit again and hit hard” by al Qaeda, we were actually far safer from terrorist attacks on US soil than we were under the previous president. There have been several unsuccessful attacks against the US under both Bush and Obama, but under Obama, al Qaeda was largely unsuccessful in striking the US on our home soil.
Source: Timeline of Al Qaeda Attacks
14. We Caught and Deported More Illegal Immigrants During Obama's Presidency Than Ever Before
Despite the mythology that was being spread about our "open border" with Mexico, the numbers prove that President Obama turned back and deported more illegal immigrants than any other president. Obama's supporters often criticized him for this fact.
Politifact checked the claim that President Obama turned away more illegal immigrants than any other president, and they confirmed that under President Obama, the US turned back or deported an average of 32,886 people per month. That's a far greater rate than any other president in history by far.
Source: Has Barack Obama deported more people than any other president in U.S. history? Tampa Bay Times.
Additional Facts About Economic Gains With Obama's Presidency
Although all of the facts stated above can be confirmed through multiple sources, most Americans are not aware of these positive statistics. I invite you to do your own research and check these facts for yourself.
The truth is, most other presidents would envy President Obama’s record which has flourished despite the fact that he inherited the results of the worst economic crash since the Great Depression.
If you feel particularly ambitious, feel free to research these additional facts:
- Since Obama became president, our economy went from losing 750,000 jobs per month to adding 250,000 jobs per month. That’s a net improvement under Obama of about 1 million jobs per month!
- Before Obama became president, our financial system was in ruins and millions of people were at risk of losing their life savings. Now, the financial loopholes have been fixed and we are no longer at risk of another financial collapse.
- In just 7 years under Obama, there were more than three times as many jobs created as there were in the whole 8 years under George W. Bush.
- President Obama passed credit card reforms that protect consumers from excessive fees, rate hikes, deceptive marketing, and unreasonable due dates.
- Thanks to Obamacare, senior citizens have saved billions of dollars on prescription drugs.
- The Affordable Care Act requires insurance companies to spend at least 80% of collected premiums on healthcare. As a result, millions of Americans have received refunds from their health insurance companies.
Source: Health Insurers Set to Give Out More Obamacare Refunds; Huffington Post Business.
Despite the unprecedented obstructionism and record number of filibusters used by Republicans to kill even the most routine legislation, the fact remains that the American people are profoundly better off today than they were before President Obama took office, in almost every measurable way.
Note From the Author
For those of you who disagree with, or dislike this article and you want to leave a comment, please give some specifics or make some meaningful comment about what you disagree with. I have always kept all comments visible, positive or negative. But if all you are going to do is say this article is BS without elaborating or specifying what you disagree with, then I will no longer keep those kinds of comments.
Feel free to tell me this article is BS but put some thought into your comments and don't just waste time with pointless insults.
This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.
Questions & Answers
Question: Do these facts derive from "fake news"?
Answer: No, none of this information came from Breitbart, Infowars, or any othe fake news site.
Question: Where did you get your facts?
Answer: There are links to source information throughout the article. You can independently verify every single fact in this article quite easily.
Question: Regarding Obama's presidency, what about people that left the workforce and the quality of jobs he created? Why don’t you measure his numbers from before the recession?
Answer: Obama doesn't have any numbers from before the recession since the recession began a year before he became president. The recovery began slowly, but he did preside over the creation of jobs in the manufacturing and construction sector as well as hundreds of thousands of white-collar jobs.
© 2014 jeff61b