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US midterm moods range from bitter to upbeat

brussels bureau

US midterm moods range from bitter to upbeat


In Washington DC and New York City and across the United States, voters ahead of the midterm elections are of mixed minds about their government’s performance. Some give the Commander-in-Chief the benefit of the doubt. Others were direct in their criticism.

Interviews with the ordinary public reflected the mood.

“He has not done anything. Basically, he promised a lot of stuff and nothing has been done. The war: people are still out there. People are still dying, regardless of what. Guantanamo Bay is still open. What is he doing? Nothing.”

“I think the economy has not done very well and that some of the things they focused on over the past few years, like health care rather than focusing on creating jobs has not helped the situation.”

“I think that there have been other presidents, in recent history even, who have had a congress that has been of an opposite party to the one the president represented, and they were able to get many things done. I think it will change the way he (Obama) has to present policies, but I think he can still do it.”

Author Amy Goodman, also a journalist with the online publication openDemocracy, found the mobilisation of Barack Obama’s supporters wanting.

Goodman said: “I think people who voted for President Obama thought that they had done what they needed to do and stepped back. But the fact is that the right wing organised after that, and progressives sat back. And now they are realising that that is a very serious mistake.”

Euronews correspondent Valerie Zabriskie, in Washington DC, said: “These midterm elections are widely seen as a verdict on Obama’s presidency so far – a president who warned America’s 300 million citizens that change would take time. But with growing job losses and a bleak economic picture, many Americans are now saying they are ready for change, but in the form of a new government.”

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