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The American LeftIts Impact on Politics and Society since 1900$
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Rhodri Jeffreys-Jones

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780748668878

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748668878.001.0001

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A President for the Left?

(p.174) Chapter 11 Obama
The American Left

Rhodri Jeffreys-Jones

Edinburgh University Press

President Barack Obama provoked a revival in anti-socialist and anti-left rhetoric on the American right. He had been exposed to leftist influences in his youth, and repeatedly referred to his “friends on the left”. Aspects of his domestic policies, such as his plans for a high-speed rail system and above all his successful push for universal health insurance, suggest that he could be labeled a man of the left. But considerable numbers on the left denounced him for moving too slowly in bringing home troops from foreign wars, and for continuing to authorize drone strikes. Obama was in some ways a president for the left, but he was not of the left.

Keywords:   Obama, rail system, health insurance, drone strikes

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