On November 4, 2008, history was made when Barack Obama was elected the 44th President of the United States. The then Illinois senator became the first African American elected to the country’s highest office. Obama defeated John McCain after receiving 365 electoral votes to McCain’s 173. Obama also won the popular vote, 52.9 percent to 45.7 percent.
Barack Obama was born in Hawaii in 1961 and is a graduate of Columbia University and Harvard Law School. He practiced law in Chicago as a civil rights attorney and also taught at the University of Chicago Law School until 2004, when he was elected to the United States Senate.
Following a rousing keynote address at the 2004 Democratic National Convention in 2004, Barack Obama started to gain national attention and a lot of support for a presidential run. He announced his run for the presidency in February of 2007.
Barack Obama was inaugurated as the 44th President of the United States on January 20, 2009. He took over the highest office in the country during an economic recession and that was his focus in his first months and years of presidency. In February of 2009, he signed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, and in December of 2010, he signed the Tax Relief, Unemployment Insurance Reauthorization, and Job Creation Act, both designed to jump-start the economy and create jobs.
Barack Obama also took over the presidency with the country involved in the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. He withdrew troops from Iraq and increased levels in Afghanistan. In April of 2011, he ordered a group of solders to kill Osama bin Laden, the leader of al-Queda, who was hiding out in Pakistan.
Barack Obama has announced his intentions to run for a second term in 2012.