Obama's tired cliches, Michelle's facile tugs on the heart strings, Daley's political machine and Oprah's smug ernestness weren't enough, and in the first round of voting the International Olympics Committee rejected Chicago's bid for the 2016 Olympics in its corruption-infested and murder-littered city as reported by Kenneth P. Vogel for Politico:
In addition to being the first president to personally lobby the IOC, Obama established the first-ever White House Olympics office (tapping senior White House advisor and longtime confidant Valerie Jarrett to head it) and recorded several videos seeking support from IOC subcommittees. The President and First Lady Michelle Obama, who had spent two days in Copenhagen lobbying IOC members and also made a formal plea to the committee Friday morning, were aboard Air Force en route from Copenhagen to Andrews Air Force Base when the IOC delivered the news, and the White House did not immediately issue a statement on the loss.
Chicago’s dismal showing today, after Mr Obama’s personal, impassioned last-minute pitch, is a stunning humiliation for this President. It cannot be emphasised enough how this will feed the perception that on the world stage he looks good — but carries no heft. * * * Mr Obama was greeted — as usual — like a rock star by the IOC delegates in Copenhagen — then humiliated by them. Perception is reality. A narrow defeat for Chicago would have been acceptable — but the sheer scale of the defeat was a bombshell, and is a major blow for Mr Obama at a time when questions are being asked about his style of governance.