- NAME: Barack Obama
- OCCUPATION: Lawyer, U.S. President, U.S. Representative
- BIRTH DATE: August 04, 1961 (Age: 52)
- Did You Know?: After serving as an Illinois senator, Barack Obama was elected the first African-American president of the United States.
- EDUCATION: Punahou Academy, Occidental College, Columbia University, Harvard Law School
- PLACE OF BIRTH: Honolulu, Hawaii
- Full Name: Barack Hussein Obama, Jr.
- AKA: Barack Obama
- ZODIAC SIGN: Leo
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Barack Obama is the 44th and current president of the United States, and the first African American to serve as U.S. president. First elected to the presidency in 2008, he won a second term in 2012.
Born in Honolulu, Barack Obama went on to become President of the Harvard Law Review. In 2008, he was elected President of the United States, becoming the first African-American commander-in-chief.
On November 4th, 2008, Barack Obama was elected President, making him the first African-American President of the United States. His victory made a powerful statement about how far the country has come on the issue of race.
Barack Obama's rise in politics from his first step into the public sphere to being elected State Senator of Illinois.
A look at the events of Barack Obama's childhood and youth that influenced and shaped him into the person he is today.
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The act also called for the creation of a bipartisan committee to seek solutions to the country's fiscal issues, but the group failed to reach any agreement on how to solve these problems.
Obama has also handled a number of military and security issues during his presidency. In 2011, he helped repeal the military policy known as "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," which prevented openly gay troops from serving in the U.S. Armed Forces. He also gave the green light to a 2011 covert operation in Pakistan,
which led to the killing of infamous al-Qaeda leader Osama bin Laden by a team of U.S. Navy SEALs.
Obama made headlines again in June 2012, when a mandate included in his Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (initiated in 2010) was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court, thus allowing other important pieces of the law to stay intact. The law includes free health screenings for certain citizens, restrictions to stringent insurance company policies and permission for citizens under age 26 to be insured under parental plans, among several other provisions. In a 5-4 decision, the Court voted to uphold the mandate under which citizens are required to purchase health insurance or pay a tax—a main provision of Obama's health-care law—stating that while the mandate is unconstitutional, according to the Constitution's commerce clause, it falls within Congress' constitutional power to tax.
As he did in 2008, during his campaign for a second presidential term, Obama focused on grassroots initiatives. Celebrities such as Anna Wintour and Sarah Jessica Parker aided the president's campaign by hosting fund-raising events.
"I guarantee you, we will move this country forward," Obama stated in June 2012, at a campaign event in Maryland. "We will finish what we started. And we'll remind the world just why it is the United States of America is the greatest nation on Earth."
In the 2012 election, Obama faced Republican opponent Mitt Romney and Romney's vice-presidential running mate, U.S. Representative Paul Ryan. On the evening of November 6, 2012, Obama was announced the winner of the election, gaining a second four-year term as president. Early election results indicated a close race. By midnight on Election Day, however, Obama had received more than 270 electoral votes—the number of votes required to win a U.S. presidential election; later results showed that the president had won nearly 60 percent of the electoral vote, as well as the popular vote by more than 1 million ballots.
Nearly one month after President Obama's re-election, the nation endured one of its most tragic school shootings to date: On December 14, 2012, 20 children and six adult workers were shot to death at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut. Two days after the attack, Obama delivered a speech at an interfaith vigil for the victims in Newtown, discussing a need for change in order to make schools safer, and alluding to implementing stricter gun control. "These tragedies must end," Obama stated.
Learn more about the lives of African-Americans who have made extraordinary achievements in their fields, with our collection of Black History Groups.
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When Swedish industrialist Alfred Nobel died in 1896, he left his fortune to create an annual series of prizes for the individuals who confer "the greatest benefit on mankind." The most prestigious of the awards is the Nobel Peace Prize. Historians believe Alfred Nobel wanted to award people who work for peace to compensate for his own role in inventing dynamite. Since its establishment, the prize has gone to many courageous individuals who have fought for peace and human rights around the world.
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Left-handed people are a rare breed—only 10 percent of the general population is a lefty. There isn't a definite scientific explanation of why people are left-handed, and although it might be an inconvenience for some, it's actually an advantage in sports. Legendary lefty athletes include baseball player Babe Ruth and basketball star Larry Bird. They're in good company with a wide variety of famous faces from President Barack Obama and Oprah Winfrey to composer Wolfgang Mozart and entrepreneur Bill Gates.
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