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Learning English - Words in the News
21 January, 2009 - Published 11:49 GMT
Obama first day
Obama inauguration
Obama inauguration 20/01/2009

President Obama has made his first efforts to roll back some of the decisions made in the last days of the Bush administration. Today he meets his economic team; he is also promising to get together with his military advisers soon to make a plan to pull troops out of Iraq. Justin Webb reports:

Listen to the story

Last July, then candidate Obama made a promise about Iraq. 'On my first day in office', he said, 'I will bring the Joint Chiefs of Staff in and I will give them a new mission, and that is to end the war responsibly and deliberately, but decisively'. Since then something else has happened of course - the world economy has collapsed, and politically it's now more important for him to be seen to be acting on the economy than on Iraq.

Nonetheless, both subjects will figure in his discussions today. This administration is promising action across the board, so a number of executive orders are likely to come soon. Already last night the White House - in a memo signed by the new Chief of Staff - ordered all the last-minute regulations signed by President Bush to be put on hold.

But it is the economy that will dominate the early days of this administration - and on which Mr Obama knows he will be judged.

Justin Webb, BBC News, Washington

Listen to the words

while being in control and having good judgement, enabling/allowing you to take correct actions

with a clear intent, purposefully

without hesitation/dithering

unexpectedly and seriously failed

to be seen to be acting on
that people see him taking measures to improve

figure in
be the topics of

across the board
in all areas of political, economic and social life

to be put on hold
to stop being introduced or enforced

be the main focus of his attention in

he will be judged
people will form their opinions about him

To take away:
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