The 5 most memorable moments of the year in American politics

January 1, 2013 9:30 am

It’s New Year’s Day and the start of 2013. 2012 produced a lot of memorable moments in American politics, so let’s take a moment to look back on them. 2012 was election year, so it was guaranteed to produce some sad, idiotic, and down-right barmy moments; and it didn’t fail in producing some. From Obama crying to an elderly Hollywood star talking to a chair, let’s look back on 2012…

5. Todd Akin’s “legitimate rape” commentsRep. Todd Akin
Missorui’s Todd Akin caused outrage across the nation after making the ridiculous comments that if a women is raped and “if it’s a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down”. This comment, which sounds more like it came from an ultra-religious preacher from the Deep South who failed biology class opposed to a politician running for Senate in Missouri, gains Akin fifth place. After the 65-year-old, who obviously skipped a lot of biology classes himself, made these stupid comments, Mitt Romney – who was running for president then – asked him to step aside and stop running for Senate. Akin defied Romney’s pleas and the GOP cut funding for his campaign. He subsequently lost to Democrat, Claire McCaskill.
Link to his “legitimate rape” comments: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=joxny3rco_4

Republican National Convention4. Clint Eastwood talking to a chair
After watching Clint Eastwood talk to a chair, that supposedly had Obama sat in, at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, it was clear that Romney had no chance of winning the election. No one could find a man willing to let an elderly Hollywood star humiliate himself by talking to a chair seriously, aside from the Republicans of course. Eastwood’s ‘stunt’ was described by various media outlets as “bizzare”, “baffling”, and “crazy”. The veteran actor stood by his stunt, and as we all know the Democrats went on to triumph over the Republicans after winning good ol’ Ohio. The ‘stunt’ didn’t help the Republicans’ election hopes as they believed it would, but only the Romney camp could’ve expected it to. The only good thing to come out of the ‘stunt’ was the abundance of Twitter parody accounts naming themselves “Invisible Obama”.
Link to Eastwood’s “bizzare” interrogation of Obama at the RNC in Tampa: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=933hKyKNPFQ

3. Barack Obama tearfulBarack Obama campaign speech
Barack Obama’s campaign team worked tirelessly to secure Obama a second term in the White House, and the Prez thanked them in an emotional speech at the campaign HQ in Chicago, the city where Obama spent many years of his life. Wiping away tears from his eyes, Obama told the young campaign team that he was proud of the work they did. This wasn’t the first time Obama showed his human side throughout the year. He was extremely emotional upon addressing the crowds of Iowans at his final campaign rally in Des Moines, and more understandably when comforting the families and victims of mass shootings such as Aurora, Sandy Hook, and the other atrocities that took place because of outdated gun laws.
Link to Obama’s tearful campaign speech: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pBK2rfZt32g

Aurora shooting2. The ongoing debate on guns, and the petition to get Piers Morgan deported
The past year has seen some of the worst mass shootings in American history. At the beginning of December, just days after a shooting at an Oregon mall, an odd “loner” opened fire at a primary school in Connecticut. This was one of many shootings that occured in 2012.

The names Adam Lanza and James Holmes have gained notoriety and infamy because of their crimes. The debate over whether the government should repeal the second ammendment has divided the United States. Piers Morgan has been very vocal on gun laws and his show has become almost centred around the second ammendment, with Morgan arguing against gun lobbyists seemingly every week. His well-publicised opinion has caused many pro-gun Americans to sign a petition that asks the White House to deport him. This petition now has over 80,000 signatures, and all of those who have signed it have done so because they claim he is illegaly attacking their consitution, which is ironic considering the constiution also defends free speech. Morgan – who has American citizenship – has the same right as any other American, to voice his opinion, yet the majority of those who oppose his views want him deported.

This debate is likely to be ongoing throughout the next year, until someone high up stands up to the NRA and enforces stricter gun laws.

1. Obama winning the electionPresident Obama Holds Election Night Event In Chicago
There’s no doubt about it, the most memorable moment has to be Obama getting reelected. Every other moment has in some way been related to the election, and, therefore, it wins the title of the most memorable moment of the year in American politics. After defeating the GOP’s Mitt Romney, Obama held a victory rally in Chicago, the biggest city in the state which he was senator of before becoming president. In his 2008 campaign he stressed “hope” and “change”, but in his campaign of 2012 he stressed looking “forward”. Billions of dollars were injected into both Obama and Romney’s campaigns, leaving many Americans bewildered as to what all this money changed apart from putting the United States closer to the fiscal cliff. Post-2012 election America isn’t much different to pre-election America; Obama is still at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and the Republicans still dominate the House. What has changed is America is gradually shaking off it’s out-of-date conservative values and becoming a more liberal state that celebrates gay rights, legal marijuana among other significant social issues. Obama’s second term means that the USA is heading for change, socially and politically.

Honourable Mentions
Binders full of women"Binders full of women" meme
“We took a concerted effort to go out and find women who had backgrounds that could be qualified to become members of our cabinet. I went to a number of women’s groups and said: ‘Can you help us find folks?’ and they brought us whole binders full of women.” – Mitt Romney

This quote was one of many gaffes Romney made during his campaign. The former Governor of Massachussetts made this comment during the town hall debate at Hofstra University, in an attempt to show us Romney the feminist. However, it ended up making him sound like an out-of-touch grandad who viewed women as business admin.

Romney aide swearing at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier in PolandGorka meme
Romney’s campaign was rife with gaffes. In this incident one of Romney’s aides, Rick Gorka, swore at US reporters yelling questions at the presidential contender at the Tomb of the Unkown Soldier in Poland. The irony was that his outburst was because he thought the reporters were being disrespectful coming to a sensitive place like this to fire questions at a politician. Didn’t it occur to him that cursing near a grave is much more disrespectful?

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