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Post Endorsement: Barack Obama for president

In his first term, President Barack Obama has made necessary strides toward his vision of America. And although he did not make good on all his promises, we believe that what he did accomplish has earned him a second term. The Post endorses Barack Obama for president of the United States over Republican challenger Mitt Romney.

Among other things, Obama has come through on his promises to begin reforming the American health-care system, extend tax cuts for the middle class and end the war in Iraq. “Obamacare,” though not perfect, is an accomplishment not to be ignored. Tax cuts for people making less than $200,000 (or families making less than $250,000) were originally passed under former President George W. Bush, but Obama wisely continued them — his plan to build the middle class depends on it. And the costly, drawn-out war in Iraq was finally ended during Obama’s term.

Obama’s first-term resumé also includes the end of the military’s “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy, reform on Wall Street to restrict abusive lending practices, and the death of Osama bin Laden.

Fundamentally, we believe Obama is the right choice for the job.

His health-care reform, which Romney has promised to repeal, is already benefitting people — especially college students and others in their early 20s who can stay on their parents’ insurance plans until they are 26. Obama’s views on gay marriage are in tune with the 21st century.

Obama’s plan to reduce the nation’s budget deficit is the right one. While Romney’s goal of balancing the budget solely through cutting spending is admirable, it should not be done at the expense of services such as PBS and Planned Parenthood, for which Romney plans to remove funding. Taxes simply have to be raised sometimes, and the people who should pay more — as Obama believes — are the people who have more.

Romney proposes an increase in defense funding at a time when the country is already in debt. That sort of spending is irresponsible. Obama has it right; as he said during the third presidential debate, “After a decade of war … we’ve got to do some nation-building here at home.”

If he is re-elected, however, Obama should make good on some promises he didn’t keep the first time around. The war in Afghanistan should end (troops are already being withdrawn). Immigration law should be reformed, and the detention camp at Guantanamo Bay should be closed.

A second term would give Obama the chance to finish what he started, and we believe he is still the right choice for the country.

Endorsements represent the majority opinion of The Post’s executive editors.

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