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This year hasn’t been as bad for Obama as some pundits claim
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Dec. 18, 2013 9:10 a.m.

To hear the chattering classes tell it, 2013 has been an unmitigated political disaster for Barack Obama — what with the problems with the rollout of the Affordable Care Act and certain other difficulties.
But has the year really been all that bad for the president?
Steve Benen OFFERS a few qualifiers:
* Twice congressional Republicans threatened debt-ceiling default; twice Obama stood his ground; and twice the GOP backed down before Congress did real harm. The presidential leadership helped establish a new precedent that will benefit Obama, his successors, and the country.
* Congressional Republicans shut down the government
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