|Country of origin:
|United States of America (USA)
|Source of Wealth:
Barack Hussein Obama II rose to worldwide prominence as the 44th President of the United States of America (USA). Prior to his tenure from 2009 to 2017, he represented the US state of Illinois in the United States Senate for the Democratic Party. The following article takes a closer look at the formerly most powerful man in the world.
Barack Obama’s family has international roots. While his mother, who is from the US state of Kansas, has Irish, British, German and Swiss ancestry, his father is from Kenya. The parents, who met while they were students, were forced to marry in Hawaii in 1961 because at that time black-white marriages were still illegal on the continent. Soon after his parents separated, Barack Obama moved to Indonesia with his mother, where he spent his early years in international schools. After he returned to Hawaii in 1971, he grew up with his maternal grandparents and attended a private school there.
From 1979 Obama first studied political science (majoring in “International Relations”) in Los Angeles and New York, before studying law at Harvard University after a brief stint in a non-profit organization in Chicago. During an internship during his studies he met his future wife Michelle, with whom he has been married since 1992 and with whom he has two children (Malia Ann and Natasha).
Barack Obama’s political career began when he was elected to the Illinois State Senate in 1996 as a representative of a southern part of Chicago. Already here he made a name for himself on topics that would also shape his future presidency. The strengthening of health insurance should be mentioned here as an example. After re-elections in 1998 and 2002, Obama was elected to the US Senate as a junior senator with historically good results. In a candidacy four years earlier, he was defeated in the primary elections by an opponent within the party.
In his first two years as Senator alone, Obama initiated more than 150 bills and, as a member of the Committee on Foreign Relations, traveled to many countries in Eastern Europe and the Middle East. In 2006, his visit to his father’s country of birth attracted a great deal of media attention, which was used by the Obama family to position themselves in the fight against HIV. In 2008, already as a possible presidential candidate, he traveled to Germany, where he gave a speech in front of the Berlin Victory Column in front of more than 200,000 people.
On February 10, 2007, Barack Obama announced his intention to run for US President. The focus of his election campaign was on the imminent end of the Iraq war, the energy transition and health insurance for all US citizens. In the internal party primaries, he narrowly defeated Hillary Clinton and was elected the 44th President of the United States on November 4, 2008 against his competitor John McCain. In 2012, he was re-elected to a second term, beating Mitt Romney. In terms of foreign policy, Barack Obama’s presidency was shaped by the conflicts in Afghanistan and Iraq, the nascent conflicts in Syria and Ukraine, and the Arab Spring. Domestically, a falling unemployment rate and the introduction of general health insurance (“Obamacare”) are remembered. However, towards the end of his term of office, Obama was increasingly criticized for what he felt was a “taxless economic policy”. The Democratic Party and its candidate Hillary Clinton lost to Obama’s successor Donald Trump in the November 2017 elections.
– Senator in the Illinois Senate – 1996 to 2004
– Senator, United States Senate – 2004 to 2008
– Democratic Party presidential candidate – 2008
– 44th President of the United States of America – 2009 to 2017
– Nobel Peace Prize Laureate – 2009
– “There is no alternative to partnership and cooperation between nations.” – Speech at the Berlin Victory Column, July 24, 2008
– “Yes, we can!” – Also in German-speaking countries, the 2008 election slogan is quoted almost exclusively in the English original
– “Elections alone do not make a democracy.” – Speech at Cairo University, June 4, 2009
– Barack Obama announced his candidacy for US President in Springfield, Illinois. A place that was certainly not chosen without reason: 149 years earlier, the legendary Abraham Lincoln had announced the call for the end of slavery here.
– Obama’s security cost the US $44,000 a day during his presidency. After all, he was surrounded by Secret Service agents 24/7 and had access to a specially secured fleet of vehicles and planes.
– Barack Obama is an avid collector of Spider-Man and Conan the Barbarian comic books.
– At his inauguration in 2009, he had to recite the oath of office twice. The first time, the judge dictating to him had twisted a phrase. However, since the oath must be taken in the exact wording, the ceremony was repeated later in the White House.