Presidents of the United States, late in their second terms, are usually viewed as lame ducks. Yet Mr Barack Obama, with only 18 months remaining in office, has regained the initiative.

President Obama long ago failed to live up to the hopes of reuniting American society raised by his first campaign. The deepening divide in Congress came close to derailing the president’s flagship project – health care. A mood of 'declinism' spread in the US as budget standoffs with Congress weakened confidence in governance at large. Yet in the summer of 2015, Mr Obama abruptly reasserted himself with a whirlwind series of victories, perhaps setting the stage for further success to come.

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Dr. Uwe Nerlich
Then came a summer of political comfort for the president, full of countervailing developments that promised to turn the situation around
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