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April 19, 2010 | by  | in News |
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Opinions on Obama

Vic Lecturer tells us how it is

Fulbright Scholar Dr Jon Johansson, a senior lecturer in Victoria University’s Political Science and International Relations programme, says despite Barack Obama’s historic passing of healthcare reform, the United States is divided like never before, and the president faces a massive challenge in his push for change.

Johansson will discuss the Obama presidency at a public lecture on 28 April.

He will draw upon a semester spent in the US observing the healthcare debates, Tea Party protests and Obama’s decision to send more troops to Afghanistan.

Johansson will offer diverse perspectives on why Obama’s first year in office proved so problematic, and how the passage of healthcare reform might shift his political dynamic.

“The problems in America are so institutional in nature that the presidency is entirely problematic. It’s fair to ask whether any president can effectively lead in 21st century America.”

While in the United States Johansson visited about 20 States. He says the overall feeling was one of very real angst, with Obama failing to live up to impossibly large expectations on his presidency.

“Obama is immensely popular overseas, and has great skills, but skill is not enough in the American political system. There are real constitutional problems that have built up over the years, and they are the road blocks to enduring change.”

Johansson is a frequent media commentator, regularly appearing on TV One’s Q&A, and is the author of several books, including The Politics of Possibility: Leadership in Changing Times, published last year by Dunmore Press.

What: Obama in Political Time: Presidential leadership in the 21st century
When: 6-7.30pm, Wednesday 28 April 2010.
Where: RHLT1, Rutherford House, Bunny Street, Pipitea Campus Victoria University

Please RSVP to wellington@fnzaa.org by Monday 26 April.

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