Now that the celebration is over, President Obama is ready to begin his second term, and his cup runneth over with items to tackle.
The commander is set to get to work on fiscal deadlines, including the debt limit, which is expected to be raised following a House vote, tomorrow.
With the current debt limit at $16.4 trillion, the legislation will allow the government to keep borrowing money, yet no specific number barrier has been outlined. The legislation will automatically increase the number needed to fund government obligations through May 18.
A forthcoming plan to continue to withdraw troops from Afghanistan, and the threat of terrorism are other items on the commander in chief’s agenda; as the death of three Americans in Algeria, last week, has raised threat concerns. Victor Lynn Lovelady and, Frederick Buttacio—both of Texas— were identified as two of the three casualties. Gorden Lee Rowan was the other person confirmed as dead. All three victims were killed at the Ain Amenas field in the Sahara, but seven other Americans were able to make it out of the hostage standoff.
“I’m glad we were able to get some rescued, but we did lose three Americans,” announced Defense Secretary Leon Panetta on his way to the president’s inauguration, Monday (Jan. 21). “That just tells us that al-Qaida is committed to creating terror wherever they area and we’ve got to fight back.”
Then there’s the economy, which is perhaps one of the biggest issues contributing to what will be the legacy of his second term.
“The key challenge is how to ensure that there are good middle-class jobs with rising wages for the broader working population,” noted Obama’s top economic aide, Brian Deese. “There are a number of long-term pressure on that—and challenge to that—from technological trends, demographic trends. I think that if you look at the drivers of productivity over the long term and you look at the things that will position our economy but also our worker force to compete for the jobs of the future, they dovetail with the priorities the president has set.”
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