The Obama Administration and US-Africa Relations
Years before Barack Obama took Office in late January 2009 to become the 44th President of the United States, positive relations have been observed between the United States and sub-Saharan African states, and attributed to former Presidents Clinton and Bush. President Barack Obama, whose late father is Kenyan, was then expected to at least continue where his two immediate predecessors left off. This paper examines the Obama Administration's relations with African countries, and asks whether the Obama Administration's policies toward African countries are similar to or different from those of former Presidents Clinton and Bush. To what extent does Obama's African origin impact his policies and stance toward Africa? We argue that unrealistic expectations might have exacerbated perceptions of Obama's legacy and that given broader institutional constraints, individuals can only do so much in shaping U.S. policy.