Overnight dash to Copenhagen fails.

WASHINGTON, Oct 2 (Reuters) – U.S. President Barack Obama’s politically risky Olympics gamble failed to bring home the gold on Friday, with the Olympics committee’s refusal to grant the 2016 Summer Games to his hometown Chicago.

The president, whose even-tempered personality has earned him the nickname “No Drama Obama,” broke from that mold to make an overnight dash from Washington to Copenhagen to personally lobby for Chicago.Obama and his wife, Michelle, had taken their star power to the Danish capital to make Chicago’s case, ignoring the carping from Republican opponents who charged it was a bad time to go with foreign policy challenges in Iran and Afghanistan and the U.S. Congress bogged down in a domestic healthcare debate.

“I’m asking you to choose Chicago. I’m asking you to choose America,” Michelle Obama told committee members. The Republican National Committee chairman, Michael Steele, was unsparing in his criticism in a statement issued before the decision was announced and on a day when the U.S. jobless rate rose to 9.8 percent, a 26-year high.

“As President Obama travels to Copenhagen to bring the Summer Olympics to his hometown seven years from now, Americans back home are increasingly concerned they won’t have a job seven months from now as they see more and more of their neighbors and friends lose jobs today,” Steele said.

  1. Howard Beale says:

    # 60 link didn’t take

  2. m.c. in l.v. says:

    To those asking why President Obama didn’t choose a different city, you obviously don’t know that the proposed host city was chosen by the U.S. Olympic Committee long, long before President Obama was even running for President. Houston, Philadelphia, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco were being considered in May, 2006. The list was whittled down in July, 2006 to Chicago, L.A. and San Fran. The USOC didn’t choose Chicago over L.A. until April 2007. I’m sure the President would have supported any U.S. city that had made the short list and had a chance to host the Olympics.

    You have 11 years to get your panties in a bunch again as Tulsa is considering bidding for the 2020 games.

    Why do the Rushpublicans hate America?

  3. LotsaLuck says:

    I only watch the Olympics for the volleyball anyway…..


  4. Howard Beale says:


    Why do the Rushpublicans hate America?
    because Americas hate Rushpublicans

  5. jbenson2 says:

    Obama said, “I think it’s always a worthwhile endeavor to promote and boost the United States of America.”

    Great. When does he start?

  6. jbenson2 says:

    # 14 The Monster’s Lawyer said,

    What the fck. It was a small side trip. Nothing ventured, nothing gained. I’d dare say it was more enterprising than anything GW did in all his 8 years in orifice.

    A useless small side trip that cost over $10 million dollars.

    What the fck?

  7. derspankster says:

    “The political discourse in this country has completely gone to shit, and at a time when we really need to work together to fix all the serious problems that we face.”

    Very well said Troublemaker. Kudos!

  8. Troublemaker says:

    chuck said, on October 2nd, 2009 at 11:43 am

    This was the first time an American President had directly lobbied to get the Olympics.

    Oh really?


    Bush boosts NY Olympic bid
    2005-02-24 13:30

    New York – President George W Bush boosted New York’s bid for the 2012 Olympics, sending a message of assurance to an International Olympic Commission group that the US government was prepared to help cover security costs – which soared above $1bn in Athens last year.



    President Bush Meets with Chicago 2016 Bid Committee and United States Olympic Committee Members

    11:35 A.M. CST

    THE PRESIDENT: I want to thank the members of the 2016 Chicago bid to get the Olympics. Listen, Mr. Mayor, you and your committee have put together a great plan. It’s a plan that will make America proud.

    They say that the Olympics will come to Chicago if we’re fortunate enough to be selected, but really it’s coming to America, and I can’t think of a better city to represent the United States than Chicago.

    President George W. Bush and Chicago Mayor Richard Daley hold up a T-shirt touting Chicago 2016, during a meeting Monday, Jan. 7, 2008, with with members of the Chicago 2016 Bid Committee and the U.S. Olympic Committee. Said the President, “This country supports your bid, strongly. And our hope is that the judges will take a good look at Chicago and select Chicago for the 2016 Olympics.” White House photo by Joyce N. Boghosian This is a well thought out venue. There will be — the athletes will be taken care of. People who will be coming from around the world will find this good city has got fantastic accommodations, great restaurants. It will be safe.

    And so I — this country supports your bid, strongly. And our hope is that the judges will take a good look at Chicago and select Chicago for the 2016 Olympics.

    Thank you all.

  9. qb says:

    I’m looking at the comments here and wondering “When did so many Americans become afraid to fail?”.

  10. Troublemaker says:

    meccadeath said, on October 2nd, 2009 at 5:22 pm

    You moronic Obamatrons are the ones who not only hate America but hate the constitution as it has been written. Do you not see the huge pay offs / bail outs of corrupt corporations?

    Refresh my memory… wasn’t the first TARP bail-out done under Bush?

    People that think that there is any difference between the two parties crack me up.

  11. chuck says:

    Obama had to go to support the bid.
    There were 4 scenarios:

    1. Obama stays home. Chicago loses. Obama gets blamed for not going. -1 for Obama.

    2. Obama stays home. Chicago wins. Obama can’t take any credit. 0 for Obama.

    3. Obama goes. Chicago loses. Obama can say “at least I tried”. 0 for Obama.

    4. Obama goes. Chicago wins. Obama takes credit. +1 for Obama.

    So if he had stayed home, there’s nothing to gain for Obama. The only “win” for Obama required him to go.

  12. Greg Allen says:

    Sometimes I asbsolutely loathe American politics.

    Obama didn’t “lose” the Olympics, for goodness sakes.

    He made a speech. That’s about it.

    The only political “risk” was that idiot conservatives would hammer him on it. But they will hammer him on everything and anything regardless of what he does.

    Hell, if Obama cures cancer, ends world hunger and gets everyone a pony, they’d hammer him for it.

  13. Greg Allen says:

    >> Dr Dodd said,
    >> For his entire presidency Obama has been going around the world apologizing and telling everyone how much America sucks.

    “America sucks”? Is that a direct quote?

    Somehow, I missed that speech.

    Oh, wait a minute. Maybe you watch Fox instead of the real news. You realize they just make all that crap up, don’t you?

    Watching Fox makes you stupid. Seriously. It literally makes you stupid.

  14. bobbo, don't confuse a LIEBERTARIAN with facts says:

    #78–chuck==this is America, we always give points for trying.

    #79–Greg==I must strongly disagree. Fox doesn’t make you stupid. Truly, you do have to be stupid to begin with to watch it. Fox only keeps you uninformed.

    Seems to me that making a pitch within 12 hours of the formal voting is making an effort way after the horse already left the barn? More effective would have been a continuous push starting 4 years ago?

    I’ve read about the bribing/coercion of Olympic Organizers regarding the placement of games. Does seem some sort of rotation would be fair==first time ever for South America?–about time I would think.

    Ted Turner tried valiantly to kill the Olympics with the America Based Freedom Games. Didn’t take.

  15. ridin the short bus says:

    It simply amazes me to read some of the commects regarding Obama and “his” choice of Chicago.. Chicago was a bid City Long befor u and I ever heard of Obama… and lastly I belive Tourblemaker said it right the firts time in post Number 2…

    forgive me for reposting… his words..
    Obama lost? I don’t much care for him, but it seems to me that Chicago… and ultimately the US lost. We all lost.

    Then again assholes like to politicize every little thing these days with petty, childish partisan hackery. Such as this ignorant blog post.

    The political discourse in this country has completely gone to shit, and at a time when we really need to work together to fix all the serious problems that we face.

  16. deowll says:

    Not to worry. He can always claim the trip was really to spend 2 minutes with the General.

  17. Glenn E. says:

    It was very briefly revealed that a faction in Chicago exists, that doesn’t want the Olympics there. Their concern is that the games will be a taxpayer fiasco. And millions of dollars of their money will be used to pick up the cost of hosting the games. While the super rich will pocket the bulk of the profits, set aside for them, liability free. I fear the same thing, when I hear that NASCAR might be coming to my town. And that the politicians will hide the drain on tax dollars, for a time. At least until after the next election is over. So the Chicagoans may have dodged a bullet. And perhaps the rest of US taxpayers too. But poor Oprah won’t get to make any more millions, promoting the Olympics with her show or magazine. That may have been what cost them the IOC vote. They may not have responded well to being extorted by her media machine. “Give me tons of money, or I’ll poo poo your event.” I can’t think of why else Oprah would care about the Olympics coming to her town, except that she could make a buck off it.

  18. Thomas says:

    The explanation is simple. Say it out loud:
    1. “We’re going to Chicago”
    2. “We’re going to Rio”

    The response to #1: meh.
    The response to #2: Sweet!!.

  19. Nugget Coombs says:

    Come on Yanks, after the Coke-a-Cola Olympics in Atlanta being such a farce, what else did you expect? Its great to see the Olympic Games going to a South American country for the first time. Carnival time is looking to be more fun than ever in 2016, just enjoy it!

  20. Mr. Fusion says:

    #72, qb,

    “When did so many Americans become afraid to fail?”.

    Well, sitting on the inside here, You come very close to the truth.

    It is the right wing nuts, led by their assholes leaders Boss Limpdick, Michael Steele,John Bonehead, and the FOX SPEWS organization. You see, they want America to fail. They promote America failing as that makes them look good.

    Right wing nuts don’t care about the middle class. They instead want the middle class to just fall in in lockstep. To wear a ring in their nose to be led around a little easier. To consume but not necessarily produce. Then tell them it is their own lazy fault they don’t work and thus don’t have health insurance or can’t pay their mortgage.

    Their strength lays in America’s weakness.

  21. Philgar says:

    You all are missing the significance. It’s not about Obama winning or not winning the Olympics.

    If he hadn’t gone this wouldn’t be news. He attached himself politically to something he has no control over. It was a foolish political move.

  22. qb says:

    Alfred1 channeling Rush Limbaugh: “Obama cannot win in a fair vote”.

    George Will on the F word.

    That’s the difference between a real conservative and a poser like Limbaugh.

  23. RTaylor says:

    No offensive to Chicago, but Rio has a bit better views. Besides the construction will help the very poor Brazilians in ghettos that tourist don’t see. With Chicago politics it would have been a major screwup with graft going everywhere. Not that Brazilian politicians are above a bit of skimming.

  24. MikeN says:

    >“When did so many Americans become afraid to fail?”.

    Probably from listening to liberals opinions on whether there should be a surge in Iraq.

  25. MikeN says:

    Eisenhower said the President shows up only after success is known.

    I’ll give Obama credit for taking a chance. I just wish it was a chance at something I wanted.

    I also hope he learns that his sweet talk isn’t as persuasive as he thinks.

  26. qb says:

    #92 Alfred1, you’re really that slow? Wow, I’m so sorry.

  27. Uncle Patso says:

    I’m pushing for President Obama to make a major speech praising The Flag, Motherhood and Apple Pie, just to see the right squirm.

  28. Rick Cain says:

    Well we tried, and Obama gave it his best.

    If Obama had not, the Republican House Negro Steele would have criticized him.

    But Obama went, and the Republican House Negro Steele criticized him for going.

    Its just that way with the Republican party, they believe themselves to be an opposition party regardless of whether it helps America or not, because their only concern is regaining power, not helping the country.

  29. Rick Cain says:

    Is Chicago really all that bad?

    2008 Chicago Homicides – 510

    2008 Rio Homicides (the first 6 months!) – 2859


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