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By Edward Luce in Washington
Published: April 17 2009
Many US presidents - the past two included - begin their terms vowing to focus on domestic problems, but end up obsessed with foreign policy. For Barack Obama, who today travels to Trinidad for the Summit of the Americas, having stopped off to visit Felipe Calderón, his Mexican counterpart, that switch may come unusually quickly.
Mr Obama is feted abroad, even if he is finding it harder than his predecessors to impose Washington's agenda on the world. But the realities of dealing with an increasingly multi-polar world pale in comparison to the growing migraine he faces at home.
Within the next two weeks the Obama administration is to release some results of the long-awaited "stress tests" of the nation's 19 largest banks. If truth be told, these tests could have been finished in an afternoon many weeks ago. But the administration pushed back the day of reckoning to buy some breathing space.