Daily Video

September 29, 2009

Obama Pushes for 2016 Games in Chi-town

For the first time ever, a sitting US president is helping make a bid for an American city to host the Olympic Games.

President Obama announced last week that he, along with his wife Michelle, Oprah and several members of his White House staff will travel to Copenhagen to plug Chicago in the final vote on host city for the 2016 Olympic and Para Olympic Games.

Along with Chicago, the committee is considering Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Madrid, Spain, and Tokyo, Japan, as host cities.

If Chicago wins, it will be the first American city to host the Summer Games since Atlanta in 1996. The Games have never been in South America or Africa, and Rio is seen as a sentimental favorite by some.


“Most importantly, the Olympic and Paralympic Games would be a huge boost to our economy, raising it to a new level. They would help us recover sooner from the recession.” Mayor Richard Daley, Chicago

“One of the problems that Chicago has had is the amount of money that they intend to spend is modest compared to what it is that we’ve seen in other Olympic Games” Robert Baade, Lake Forest College

“It’s not creating sports venues, for example, that will create the legacy, but something in the way of transportation or communications infrastructure that’s key, really, to having some lasting effect from the Olympic Games.” Robert Baade, Lake Forest College

Warm Up Questions

1. What is the Olympics? What are the Para Olympic Games?

2. Why would a city want to host the Olympic Games?

Discussion Questions

1. What criteria should be used to pick a city for the games? Why use those?

2. Why do you think the games have never been held in Africa or South America? Do you think they should be held there?

3. In the piece it was stated that some cities get public money to finance the games and some use private monies, what are the pros and cons of either way? Which way would you prefer?

4. Why might there be disagreement between city leaders such as the mayor and residents of a city that might be affected by construction and other problems that would come with the Games?

Additional Resources

Read the transcript

Official Olympic Website

Olympic Bid Review

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