In the run up to the 2004 American presidential election we asked a panel of voters to share their views and predictions ahead of the outcome. Here, on Inauguration Day, they look ahead to President George W Bush's second term.
MEET THE PANEL
Name: Corey Harrison
Lives: Chicago, Illinois
Works: Real estate
In 10 words or less:
"A liberal Jew with a cynical view"
Domestic issues have significantly become the focus of this administration since November.
Unfortunately the tone and rhetoric hasn't changed along with the policies.
The same self-confidence that drove us into war and away from internationalism is now pointed at our internal financial institutions of taxes, social security and tort reform.
I don't know where this will lead us, but I do know that it will not be beneficial to the middle class.
Still, the president must be careful of how hard he should push.
The American public seems to have a large capacity for pushing our will on other countries, but we might not be as happy when it's pointed at us.
This will be a key test of President Bush's second term.
Can he apply the same force to implement domestic policies as he did to our foreign policy?
The large number of cabinet changes does not seriously concern me.
Any significant difference of opinion among this administration's senior staff has already been removed (Paul O'Neill in Treasury and Christine Todd Whitman at the Environmental Protection Agency).
The fact that Donald Rumsfeld has kept his job throughout the constant Iraq problems while Colin Powell was replaced with Condoleezza Rice demonstrates to me that cabinet positions are just meant to reflect the White House's own views.
Bush controls the senate, house and shortly the supreme court so what can be done if he does "push too hard"? There are no differing opinions in the cabinet anymore, with few checks, fewer balances and no vigorous debate - is that the very essence of democracy?
Brian Gonsalves, Calgary, Canada
I appreciate his moderate, intelligent comments. I disagree totally with almost everything Bush has done or tried to do in his first term, and I fear for this country if he gets any of his agenda through in his second term.
Pat Young, Mt Vernon, WA, USA
I cannot but agree with you in every aspect but I don't think it is Bush who is making the decisions. I would say it is rather Cheney. Bush is just the one that celebrates the inauguration.
Munir El Kadi, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates
Corey, once again, speaks a lot of sense here. His comments about America forcing its will on other countries is absolutely correct and the US would be up in arms, literally, if the same was done back to them. And Britain is much the same. This will be a scary four years for America. A very rocky ride for all, I fear.
Russ T, Bristol, UK
Thank you Corey for continuing to show that many people here are extremely unhappy with the Bush administration. I think the Democrats also need to shore up some of the blame. Until they get some spine and finally begin to openly criticise the Bush administration's policies, it is only going to get worse.
Michael Scott, Nashville, TN, USA
To Michael Scott: Do you think anyone will forget that many people don't like the president? The liberals in this country have been screaming how much they hate Bush for four years! Democrats have been nothing but obstructionists and are still not providing new ideas. Yes, liberals don't like Bush. We get the idea!
Tim, Bethesda, MD, USA
Corey is concerned that if Bush tackles taxes, social security, and tort reform the results will not benefit the middle class. I don't understand that view. For example, social security currently functions by using the taxes paid by workers to pay benefits to those already retired. If Bush succeeds in allowing workers to put some of the money allocated to taxes into personal accounts which earn much greater returns, won't that have it's greatest positive impact upon the middle class (ie those who work and pay taxes but don't have the resources of the 'rich')?
Vickie Keiser, Columbia, MO, USA
George Bush's tax cuts save the rich a whole bunch of money and the middle class save a few pennies. So, Vickie, unless you are really rich, you'll find out that you've saved $80 in your tax cuts and have spent $1,500 on health care and $2,000 for the increased price of fuel. Get real. Tax cuts help people who make money. Tax cuts are good for the middle class. So, roll back the ones for the rich. Unfortunately, we all know whose side George is on when it comes to tax cuts.
Walter Mathaus, Crawford, USA