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May 12, 2013

The Second Term Curse

"Not four months after his ambitious inaugural address, President Obama finds himself struggling to move his legislative agenda through an unbudging Congress," the Washington Post reports.

"And over the past week, two flaring controversies -- one over his administration's handling of the killing of the U.S. ambassador and three other Americans in Libya, the other over Internal Revenue Service employees targeting tea party groups for special scrutiny -- have dominated the discussion in Washington."

"It is far from clear how big a political liability either will turn out to be. At a minimum, they represent diversions working against a president who is keenly aware of how little time he has left to achieve big things. And they are a test of the insular Obama team's skill at keeping its footing in an environment of hyperpartisan politics and hair-trigger media."

Stu Rothenberg: "The last five presidents elected to a second consecutive term - Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush - all suffered through problems, ranging from economic and foreign policy to personal."


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