Barack Obama profile: A hard-nosed leader with charismatic speaking skills

Barack Obama

Barack Obama, who won a second term to the White House on Wednesday against all odds, is a hard-nosed leader with an even-keel temperament, charismatic speaking skills and a knack for consensus-building.

51-year-old Obama, who defied a stiff challenge from Mitt Romney to win a presidential term again, faces thorny four years ahead amid concerns over sluggish economy while his foreign policy may continue to focus on Asia-Pacific where India is being seen as a linchpin in the US strategy.

A votary of strong ties with India, domestic compulsions forced him to raise his voice against outsourcing jobs to India during his election campaign.

Obama, the first ever US President to travel to India in his first term, has endorsed New Delhi for a permanent seat in the UN Security Council.

Notwithstanding strong dissatisfaction with his handling of the struggling economy, voters still remained loyal to him.

Obama recently toured the New Jersey coastline ravaged by megastorm Sandy along with its Republican Governor, with the two leaders praising each other for their response to the disaster in a rare bipartisanship.

He earned praise from the public for his response to the disaster, which claimed over 90 lives and caused an estimated economic damage of up to $50 billion.

Born Barack Hussein Obama, Jr, to white-American Ann Dunham and Kenya-born Harvard-educated economist on August 4, 1961 in Honolulu, Hawaii, he was elected the 44th President of the US on November 4, 2008 after he defeated then Republican candidate John McCain and was sworn in on January 20, 2009.

Obama had reached the White House exactly 45 years after the Black civil rights leader Martin Luther King challenged Americans to embrace his "dream" of equality.

Seeking to bring in the "real change" in the US, Obama, who was awarded the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize, would take the oath of office for his second term on January 21, 2013 as the Constitutionally-mandated January 20 inauguration date falls on a Sunday.

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