So, it seems that Obama was advised by the Chicago 2016 Olympic Committee that his presence would make a difference and, likely, seal the deal.
Thinking about it a bit more, this seems like a trap that Obama couldn’t avoid – look at the choices he had and the eventual “spin” he faced:
1. Obama doesn’t go to Copenhagen and we lose the bid — He turned his back on his home state and city and cost us the Olympics.
2. Obama does go to Copenhagen and we lose the bid — His ego cost us the Olympics.
3. Obama doesn’t go to Copenhagen and we win the bid — He doesn’t deserve any credit. He didn’t even try to help with the effort.
4. Obama does go to Copenhagen and we win the bid — Ask anyone, we were the clear favorite anyway. How much taxpayer money did he waste on a flight for no reason?
Seems to me Obama was in a “damned if you do, damned if you don’t position.” In the end, the theories floating around about the snub that make the sense to me are that there really was a pull to pick Rio and the voting was organized to get Chicago out first and there’s a lot of anti-US sentiment remaining from the ongoing fight between the USOC and the IOC about sharing of money.
Anyway, what’s really telling to me is the far right’s applause for the failed effort. Rather than be sad that, in the end, the United States lost out on the Olympics again (it’s happened before – New York lost out on 2012 and I believe we lost to Canada for the Montreal before that), they’re dancing around the bonfire of Obama’s defeat. Sad…