It’s safe to say that Barack Obama came to the White House with more street cred than any president in recent memory. As an African American, Obama was certainly privy to the forces of institutional racism that still shackle much of urban America. Before he got into politics, he worked as a civil rights lawyer, and before that, he worked as a community organizer in the mean streets of Chicago. (You will recall that Rudy Giuliani and Sarah Palin took turns mocking him for that last one at the 2008 Republican national convention.) When Obama became president, hopes were high that American cities would finally get a little love from Washington, which had spent fifty-plus years pouring money into the suburbs.
To be fair, with the national economy circling the drain and the suburban housing market disappearing down it, the president has had other things to worry about. Nonetheless, healthy cities are crucial to our economic recovery, and if we’re going to stave off the worst impacts of climate change, we’ll need to get serious about building communities that allow us to shake our dependence on cars. So as the 2012 elections come into view, we thought we’d take a look at Obama’s record on issues specific, if not exclusive, to cities. Read the link for the rest……http://grist.org/cities/president-obama-and-the-forgotten-urban-agenda/