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Chicago City Planners Say Obama Library Will Hurt Community, Obama Staffers 'Pleased' Anyway

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During his presidency, Barack Obama was never as popular in the country as his lapdog media pretended.

During his post-presidency, Obama might not be as popular in his hometown as he thought.

The Chicago Tribune on Tuesday reported that city planners had found that building the proposed Obama Presidential Center in the city’s Jackson Park will have an “adverse effect” on the surrounding neighborhoods.

Considering the sheer size of the project, it’s tough to see how it wouldn’t have an adverse effect no matter where it went.

Planned to cover 20 acres and sticking American taxpayers for at least $200 million, the Obama Presidential Center has been a monument to one man’s ego from its inception.

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And unlike other presidential libraries, the Obama center will not be a repository of papers relating to Obama’s consequential two terms in office, the Tribune reported last year.

In fact, it is more suited to be a museum dedicated to a single “legacy” than any kind of center for scholarship — as previous presidential libraries were conceived.

It has also received a cool welcome from Chicago residents who don’t want to see a key part of their city, Jackson Park, destroyed for a dubious gain.

Obama staffers, however, said they were satisfied with the report.

“We arrive at this point with a continued sense of urgency but also being pleased … that we are at this stage and ready to move to the next one,” Michael Strautmanis, vice president for civic engagement for the Obama Foundation, said, according to the Tribune.

The reason for that is that the project has been so badly stalled amid community opposition that it might have looked like it was never going to be completed. So the report being released at all is a sign of life.

There are some, though, who would rather the project just went away. In February, a judge OK’d a lawsuit by a group called Protect Our Parks that’s trying to force Obama to build the center somewhere else entirely.

Some center opponents are in the neighborhood …

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… and some just remember the Obama presidency with anything but affection.

Regardless of the “adverse effect” ruling, it’s more than possible the Obama center will go in exactly where its boosters hope, no matter what the impact is on the surrounding neighborhood.

It’s tough to think of a presidency that had a more “adverse effect” on the nation than the two terms of Barack Obama. It would be unfortunate for Chicago residents, but still kind of fitting, if his presidential center were the same way.

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Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro desk editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015.
Joe has spent more than 30 years as a reporter, copy editor and metro editor in newsrooms in Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Florida. He's been with Liftable Media since 2015. Largely a product of Catholic schools, who discovered Ayn Rand in college, Joe is a lifelong newspaperman who learned enough about the trade to be skeptical of every word ever written. He was also lucky enough to have a job that didn't need a printing press to do it.