Political Highs and Lows of 2013

A look back at the political ups and downs in 2013.

A Record Low - According to a new poll from Quinnipiac University, American voters disapprove of Obama's performance by 54 percent to 39 percent, a nearly 10-point dip since the health care rollout. In addition, 49 percent say he knowingly deceived the public when he said they would be able to keep health plans they have and like.  (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

1 / 12

More Lows Than Highs - It's been a tough year for Democrats and Republicans who faced impasse after impasse on key issues. And it's been particularly rough for President Obama, who began the year celebrating his second inauguration and is ending it with his lowest-ever approval numbers. He's not alone. An increasingly frustrated American public isn't feeling Congress either. Here's what they'll be thinking of when they head to the polls in 2014. – Joyce Jones (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

Inauguration Day - The year began on a high for supporters of Obama, who after making history with his re-election, was inaugurated on Jan. 21. The celebrations were lower key and the crowds smaller, but not less ebullient than in 2009.   (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

2 / 12

Inauguration Day - The year began on a high for supporters of Obama, who after making history with his re-election, was inaugurated on Jan. 21. The celebrations were lower key and the crowds smaller, but not less ebullient than in 2009. (Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The S Word - The White House and congressional Republicans were unable to reach a budget agreement by March 1, which triggered sequestration ? automatic, across-the-board cuts in government spending. As a result, jobs and vital services were reduced, and federal employees lucky enough to hang onto their jobs were forced to take unpaid furlough days. (Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

3 / 12

The S Word - The White House and congressional Republicans were unable to reach a budget agreement by March 1, which triggered sequestration – automatic, across-the-board cuts in government spending. As a result, jobs and vital services were reduced, and federal employees lucky enough to hang onto their jobs were forced to take unpaid furlough days. (Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

/content/dam/betcom/images/2013/07/Politics/070313-politics-wire-voting-rights-act-supreme-court.jpg

4 / 12

Voting Rights Act - After battling discriminatory laws that threatened to keep African-Americans and others from the polls in 2012, civil and voting rights advocates were disheartened when the U.S. Supreme Court on June 25 struck down a key portion of the Voting Rights Act of 1965 that that was used to determine which states or voting jurisdictions required pre-clearance before changing voting laws. (Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

March on Washington - The 50th anniversary commemoration of the March on Washington was both a high and a low. While African-Americans have made great strides since  Martin Luther King?s famous I Have a Dream speech in1963, there is still much to be done to overcome ongoing inequities in education, employment and even the fundamental right to vote. (Photo: AP Photo/File)

5 / 12

March on Washington - The 50th anniversary commemoration of the March on Washington was both a high and a low. While African-Americans have made great strides since  Martin Luther King’s famous I Have a Dream speech in1963, there is still much to be done to overcome ongoing inequities in education, employment and even the fundamental right to vote. (Photo: AP Photo/File)

ADVERTISEMENT
Voters Stand Their Ground Against Gun Control - Voters in Colorado threw Democratic state Sens. John Morse and Angela Giron out of office in September because of their support of new gun-control laws that mandate background checks on private gun sales and limit magazine clips to 15 rounds.(Photo: Helen H. Richardson/ The Denver Post)

6 / 12

Voters Stand Their Ground Against Gun Control - Voters in Colorado threw Democratic state Sens. John Morse and Angela Giron out of office in September because of their support of new gun-control laws that mandate background checks on private gun sales and limit magazine clips to 15 rounds.(Photo: Helen H. Richardson/ The Denver Post)

/content/dam/betcom/images/2013/10/National-10-01-10-15/101113-national-government-shutdown-protest-jobs-signs.jpg

7 / 12

Government Shutdown - The federal government screeched to a halt in October after lawmakers couldn't overcome their differences long enough to pass a short-term budget. At the center of the impasse was the Affordable Care Act. According to a White House report, the 16-day shutdown's costs included 6.6 million days in lost work, $2 billion in back pay; and the loss of 120,000 private sector jobs.   (Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images)

/content/dam/betcom/images/2013/10/Politics/100813-politics-does-Boehner-have-a-will-but-no-way-to-reopen-government.jpg

8 / 12

GOP Blues - The Republican Party's approval numbers reached record lows when the government shut down on Oct. 1. In a Washington Post/ABC poll, 53 percent of poll respondents said that Republicans were responsible, compared to 29 percent who blamed Obama and 15 percent who faulted both sides equally.(Photo: Evan Vucci/AP Photo)

/content/dam/betcom/images/2013/11/Health/112513-health-healthcare-gov-obama-care.jpg

9 / 12

Failure to Launch - Democratic lawmakers and others were disheartened by the technical glitches that caused the Affordable Care Act's dismal debut. It not only caused political rivals and supporters to question the president's management skills, but also put Democratic congressional seats at risk.(Photo: healthcare.gov)

SECOND WORKING MEETING OF G20 SUMMIT

10 / 12

How Do They Like Him Now? - The rocky rollout of the Affordable Care Act has placed Obama's presidency on life support. As 2013 drew to a close, 53 percent in CNN survey said he's not a strong or decisive leader.(Photo: Alexander Vilf/Host Photo Agency via Getty Images)

ADVERTISEMENT
Too Far? - The civil rights group ColorOfChange.org is calling on the Washington Post to fire veteran columnist Richard Cohen for writing: "People with conventional views must repress a gag reflex when considering the mayor-elect of New York ? a white man married to a Black woman and with two biracial children."   (Photo: EDUARDO MUNOZ /LANDOV/REUTERS)

11 / 12

Looks Like America - People who live outside of New York City also cheered when Bill de Blasio won his bid for mayor. For some it was a comforting sign of progress that the city elected a white man with an African-American wife and two bi-racial children.  (Photo: REUTERS/Eduardo Munoz)

Welcome to Washington - Vice President Joe Biden administers the oath of office to newly elected New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker.  (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

12 / 12

Sen. Cory Booker - After New Jersey Sen. Frank Lautenberg died in June, Newark Mayor Cory Booker handily won a special election and on Oct. 31 was sworn in, bringing the number of African-American U.S. senators to two. (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)