President Obama's opponents just struck gold, said Kenneth P. Vogel in Politico. The International Olympic Committee rejected Chicago's bid to host the 2016 Summer Games shortly after Obama traveled to Copenhagen to make a personal pitch for his hometown. "Chicago was considered a favorite along with Rio de Janeiro, but the notoriously unpredictable committee eliminated Chicago in its first round of voting." (Rio de Janeiro was selected to host the Games)
The early elimination means that Chicago didn't just fall short, said Dan Amira in New York magazine. "It was the least popular choice among the four finalist cities." There are "a million reasons" why the IOC might have snubbed Chicago, "including the fact that half of Chicago didn't want it—but because of his unprecedented involvement," it's Obama's "power and influence" that really took a beating.
Sure, "this is pretty embarrassing for the White House," said Katie Connolly in Newsweek. "But ultimately, it’s a good thing for him." The Olympics are notorious for going way over budget, and the infighting among local cronies is never pretty. And with support for the Olympic bid "lukewarm" in Chicago itself, subjecting the city's citizens to seven years of disruptive preparations was "a recipe for serious disgruntlement."