We wonder what Obama had in mind when he declared, 'I deserve a second term'. Things may be going well for him, but these are very tough times and as far as we can deduce, second terms of US Presidents haven’t particularly been very successful.
Twenty of the past US presidents have served more than one full term in the office as POTUS. Franklin D. Roosevelt was the only US President in history, to have served more than two terms in office as the President. He died during his 4th term, leaving Vice President Harry S Truman, to serve the remainder of the term.
Thanks to an amendment made later in the constitution of the United States, a President is not allowed to serve more than 10 years or two consecutive terms in office.
Whatever the case may be, not many second term US Presidents have been successful. Even the most successful US presidents have suffered major catastrophes and setbacks during their second term. For example, during George Washington’s the second term, the political culture fractured and the nation eventually found itself on the edge of a civil war!
President Jefferson landed the nation in an economic depression! Fates of James Madison, Abraham Lincoln, William McKinley and Grover Cleveland were not much different.
Economic depressions, scandals and even assassinations marked their rules. President Wilson’s second term saw a world war, race riots, flu pandemic, red scare, terrorist bombing campaigns, and if that was not enough, an economic collapse! Only Theodore Roosevelt seemingly escaped the curse. His second term proved more successful than the first.
Harry Truman led the nation to war in Korea that ended in a stalemate leaving Truman very unpopular with the American public. Dwight Eisenhower ended the Korean War in his first term but his second term was marred by several problems, many to do with his ill health. His Chief of Staff became embroiled in a bribery scandal and was forced to resign. Eisenhower himself admitted spying on Russia when the Soviets shot down a U2 spy plane and captured the pilot.
However, all hell broke loose in Lyndon Johnson’s second term. Vietnam War, anti-war protests, African American riots, there were more ails plaguing the country than the days in his term
Richard Nixon won a landslide re-election victory, but later on went down thanks to the Watergate Scandal.
Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton, and George Bush did not fare much better either.
Reagan’s era echoed with embroiling with Russia, cutting deals and trading arms.
Bill Clinton became too happy using force outside of UN paradigms and later on lied under oath to cover-up an affair with an intern becoming the second chief executive to face impeachment.
Bush's second term was decidedly more liberal but left a trail of an "Axis of Evil" and invasion of Iraq without UN support. Hurricane Katrina and Bush administration’s failure to deal with the disaster in a timely manner also cemented failure.
And now, President Barack Obama is seeking a second term as the US President.
The task before him is not an easy one. If anything it is an uphill battle to put it mildly. Top it off with the grim, lurking shadows of history, it does not really spell success. America, at the moment is not up to taking five years of disasters, even mild ones. We sincerely hope President Barack Obama has a strong grip on the tasks ahead of him and destiny smiling favorably on him and the nation he plans to lead during the next five years.