The month that was 

Having inherited a country in disarray, Barack Obama hit the ground running: making decisions, getting praise, taking flak. How is his first month as president being assessed on the ground in Colorado Springs?

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Rod Payton
Woodland Park

Running coach

Rate Obama's performance to date. It's impressive how he took charge, not waiting around for things to happen. It scares me a little how fast he's moving, though. We have to do something, I know, but the amount of debt we're accumulating is scary.

What's your biggest disappointment so far? We were all hoping for that surge in bipartisanship, but Republicans are having none of it.

Do people still believe in hope and change? We'd be foolish not to. Rush Limbaugh is saying he wants Obama to fail.

What would you say to Obama if you could? I'd urge him to stay in touch with everyday people, not surround himself with people who aren't in the real world.

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Melissa Johnson
West side


Rate Obama so far. Absolutely incredible. He's responded thoughtfully to huge problems and tried to bridge the gap between perspectives. It's not a job I'd want.

What's his top achievement to date? The compromise and leadership he exercised to get the stimulus package passed.

Are people still buying his message of hope and change? I am. I think most people are.

Given five minutes with him, what would you say? I'd discuss education his plans, what reforms he intends. I'd also discuss the concept of identity. It intrigues me how the labels we give ourselves provide us identity and meaning, something he talks about in his books.

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Roberta Huttner
West side

Social worker

How's Obama doing so far? He's done a lot in a month. He may have pushed the stimulus bill through a little quickly, but at least we're finally seeing some action.

Your biggest concern? I love that he's bringing troops back from Iraq, but he's sending more troops to Afghanistan, the same thing all over again.

Is his message of hope and change holding up? Talk is easy, and he's a great talker. Now we need follow-through. The problems he's facing can't be solved in a month, though not even in a year. Give him a little time.

What would you tell him face-to-face? I'd thank him for the hope he's given people, especially minorities and have-nots. I'd urge him to keep being the person he said he was when we elected him.

Bob Campbell


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