35 Facts About Obama

1. On May 25, 2011, Obama became the first President of the United States to address both houses of the UK Parliament in Westminster Hall, London.

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2. In 2014, Obama authorized an air campaign aimed primarily at ISIL, but repeatedly promised that the US would not deploy ground troops in Syria.

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3. In 2012, Obama authorized multiple programs run by the CIA and the Pentagon to train anti-Assad rebels.

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4. The next day, on Obama's orders, the US military took part in air strikes to destroy the Libyan government's air defense capabilities to protect civilians and enforce a no-fly-zone, including the use of Tomahawk missiles, B-2 Spirits, and fighter jets.

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5. In 2015, Obama was harshly criticized by Israel for advocating and signing the Iran Nuclear Deal; Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who had advocated the US congress to oppose it, said the deal was "dangerous" and "bad".

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6. In June 2011, Obama said that the bond between the United States and Israel is "unbreakable".

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7. In February 2013, Obama said the US military would reduce the troop level in Afghanistan from 68,000 to 34,000 US troops by February 2014.

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8. Early in his presidency, Obama moved to bolster US troop strength in Afghanistan.

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9. On October 21, 2011 President Obama announced that all US troops would leave Iraq in time to be "home for the holidays".

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10. On February 27, 2009, Obama announced that combat operations in Iraq would end within 18 months.

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11. In December 2014, Obama announced that he intended to normalize relationships between Cuba and the United States.

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12. In December 2011, Obama instructed agencies to consider LGBT rights when issuing financial aid to foreign countries.

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13. In March 2010, Obama took a public stance against plans by the government of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu to continue building Jewish housing projects in predominantly Arab neighborhoods of East Jerusalem.

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14. On September 24, 2009, Obama became the first sitting US President to preside over a meeting of the United Nations Security Council.

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15. On June 4, 2009, Obama delivered a speech at Cairo University in Egypt calling for "A New Beginning" in relations between the Islamic world and the United States and promoting Middle East peace.

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16. On November 10, 2014, President Obama recommended the Federal Communications Commission reclassify broadband Internet service as a telecommunications service in order to preserve net neutrality.

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17. On January 5, 2016, Obama announced new executive actions extending background check requirements to more gun sellers.

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18. In March 2009, Obama lifted a ban on using federal funds for stem cell research.

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19. On February 24, 2015, Obama vetoed a bill that would authorize the pipeline.

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20. In July 2013, Obama expressed reservations and stated he "would reject the Keystone XL pipeline if it increased carbon pollution" or "greenhouse emissions".

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21. In December 2013, Obama declared that growing income inequality is a "defining challenge of our time" and called on Congress to bolster the safety net and raise wages.

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22. On March 11, 2009, Obama created the White House Council on Women and Girls, which formed part of the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs, having been established by Executive Order 13506 with a broad mandate to advise him on issues relating to the welfare of American women and girls.

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23. On December 22, 2010, Obama signed the Don't Ask, Don't Tell Repeal Act of 2010, which fulfilled a key promise made in the 2008 presidential campaign to end the Don't ask, don't tell policy of 1993 that had prevented gay and lesbian people from serving openly in the United States Armed Forces.

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24. On October 30, 2009, Obama lifted the ban on travel to the United States by those infected with HIV, which was celebrated by Immigration Equality.

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25. On March 30, 2010, Obama signed the Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act, a reconciliation bill that ended the process of the federal government giving subsidies to private banks to give out federally insured loans, increased the Pell Grant scholarship award, and made changes to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

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26. In March 2009, Obama reversed a Bush-era policy that had limited funding of embryonic stem cell research and pledged to develop "strict guidelines" on the research.

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27. President Obama addressed supporters and volunteers at Chicago's McCormick Place after his reelection and said: "Tonight you voted for action, not politics as usual.

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28. On November 6, 2012, Obama won 332 electoral votes, exceeding the 270 required for him to be reelected as president.

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29. On February 10, 2007, Obama announced his candidacy for President of the United States in front of the Old State Capitol building in Springfield, Illinois.

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30. In May 2002, Obama commissioned a poll to assess his prospects in a 2004 US Senate race.

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31. In January 2003, Obama became chairman of the Illinois Senate's Health and Human Services Committee when Democrats, after a decade in the minority, regained a majority.

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32. In 1991, Obama accepted a two-year position as Visiting Law and Government Fellow at the University of Chicago Law School to work on his first book.

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33. On his 55th birthday, August 4, 2016, Obama penned an essay in Glamour, in which he described how his daughters and the presidency have made him a feminist.

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34. In June 1989, Obama met Michelle Robinson when he was employed as a summer associate at the Chicago law firm of Sidley Austin.

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35. In February 1981, Obama made his first public speech, calling for Occidental to participate in the disinvestment from South Africa in response to that nation's policy of apartheid.

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