President Barack Obama had a full schedule in 2012. In addition to running the United States, the Commander in Chief ran a campaign seeking a second term in the nation’s highest office. On November 6, 2012, Obama defeated Republican challenger Mitt Romney, ending a competitive campaign and looking ahead to another four years in the Oval Office.
The President began 2012 by stating goals for the nation in a State of the Union address. Obama’s speech focused on improving the economy and creating more jobs. In August of 2011, he challenged American businesses to hire or train 100,000 veterans and military spouses by the end of 2013. In August of 2012, more than 2,000 American companies had hired and trained 125,000 veterans and military spouses, resulting in a 20% decrease in veteran unemployment compared with the same time last year.
In June, Obama issued an executive order that allows immigrants who were brought to the U.S. illegally as children to legally stay and work in the country for at least two years. He believes students brought to the country illegally should not be the focus for immigration enforcement officers. Instead, the focus should be on criminals who are a threat to communities. Obama’s order says that veterans who have served in the U.S. military are also owed special treatment under its immigration laws. The President’s policy could benefit more than 800,000 young people in the U.S.
Obama was born in Hawaii in 1961. After graduating from Columbia University and Harvard Law School, Obama worked as a lawyer in Chicago, Illinois. In 1996, he was elected to the Illinois State Senate, and in 2004, he won a seat on the U.S. Senate. He ran a historic presidential campaign in 2008, receiving the most votes of any candidate in U.S. history and becoming the nation’s first African-American President. Obama and his wife, Michelle, are the parents of two daughters, Malia and Sasha.
For devoting himself to protecting immigrants, veterans and unemployed Americans while running an intense reelection campaign, President Barack Obama is a nominee for TFK's 2012 Person of the Year.