Obama going to Denmark to make Olympics pitch - but won't go to the UN climate meetings there in December?

Stuffed

Creative Commons License Photo credit: cmaccubbin

Tomorrow President Barack Obama will visit Denmark to try to raise support for Chicago’s Olympic bid for the 2016 summer games. First lady Michelle Obama arrived in Denmark earlier and will, with the support of Oprah Winfrey, also try to help out with the lobbying.

“President Barack Obama, who initially planned to let First Lady Michelle Obama represent the United States in Copenhagen this week, when the International Olympic Committee chooses a site for the 2016 summer games, plans to travel there too.”

Besides Obama, the Brazilian President Lula di Silva and Japanese Prime Minister Hatoyama will also visit Copenhagen tomorrow and pitch their home countries as the perfect host for the Olympic summer games in 2016. The event will take place at the International Olympic Committee summit tomorrow which just happens to be the same venue where the UN climate change summit will be held in December.

Obama is not visiting Copenhagen to show support for a fair, strong and binding climate target. Instead he is trying to lobby for an Olympic game summer event in Chicago. And no, so far Obama has not promised to go to the Cop15 climate change conference in December. This would be a perfect opportunity for Barack Obama, Lula di Silva and Hatoyama to show support for a climate deal that Gordon Brown says is in “grave danger” of failing. One can just wonder what kind of priorities our leaders has...

But Joe Romm from Climate Progress says “this is the best news I’ve heard in a while”. Romm says he is now confident Obama will participate in the climate negotiations later in December:

“This is the best news I’ve heard in a while. After all, if the president is going to Copenhagen for something that is relatively inconsequential both substantively and politically — it’s not like Illinois is in great jeopardy for the Dems — then I can now predict with high confidence he will be go to Copenhagen in December for the climate talks, which will be crucial for helping achieve a global deal.

Let’s hope he is right.


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Simon Leufstedt
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The President should stay out of it. He needs to concentrate on the economy.

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