On Nov. 4, 2008, Barack Obama won the presidential election, capping his historic bid to become the 44th president. A look at where he stands, nearly one year out:

Stimulus: In February, weeks after taking office, Obama signed into law a $787 billion stimulus bill meant to ease the effects of the recession, create and save jobs, and invest in infrastructure projects. To date, the Obama administration says the program has created or saved more than 1 million jobs. The administration has paid out $206.5 billion, or 26 percent of the total.



Children's health care: Obama signed a State Children's Health Insurance Program bill in February. In doing so, he continued coverage for 7 million children in lower-income families and extended it to an additional 4 million.



Changing U.S. image abroad: Beginning with his election, Obama sought to boost America's reputation overseas. Foreign leaders who objected to what they saw as Bush-era swagger and unilateralism welcomed Obama's emphasis on partnership and cooperation. His efforts were rewarded last month with a Nobel Peace Prize.

Appointing a Supreme Court justice: With the retirement of Justice David Souter, Obama got his first chance to name a Supreme Court justice. He chose Sonia Sotomayor, a federal appeals court judge who grew up in a Bronx housing project and excelled at Princeton University and then Yale Law School. Sotomayor, confirmed by the Senate on a 68-31 vote, became the third woman and first Hispanic justice on the nation's highest court.



Ethics and transparency: Obama set up new rules to slow the revolving door between government service and lobbying firms. He signed an executive order barring lobbyists who join the administration from working on an issue for which they had lobbied in the past two years. A loophole, though, allowed the president to make exceptions in certain cases. Obama also agreed to make public the names of visitors to the White House, a level of openness that good government groups said far exceeded that of past presidents.

Health care: Obama is waging an epic fight to pass a bill that would revamp the health care system and extend coverage to most of the 46 million people now uninsured. Legislative proposals have faced numerous snags as they move through Congress. A sticking point is whether to include a "public option" -- a government-run program that would compete with private insurers. Obama wants to sign a bill before year's end.



The economy: A hopeful sign emerged last week. The government reported that the economy grew 3.5 percent from July through September, the first growth recorded in more than a year. But the recession lingers. The unemployment rate has increased from 7.6 percent when Obama took office to 9.8 percent. Speaking Monday at the White House, Obama said: "We anticipate that we're going to continue to see some job losses in the weeks and months to come."



Afghanistan: Obama has not settled on a strategy for conducting the 8-year-old war in Afghanistan. He is weighing options, including significantly raising troop levels and targeting terrorists who pose a direct threat to U.S. interests. No date for announcing a decision has been set.



Financial regulation: Obama has vowed to develop a new regulatory regime that will forestall the kind of economic chaos touched off by the collapse of huge financial firms. Proposals moving through Congress would empower federal officials to seize and dismantle large firms whose failure would pose a risk to the economy, as well as to create a new agency that would protect consumers in the financial marketplace.



Ethics and transparency: Though government watchdog groups tout the strides he has made, Obama has not delivered on specific promises to reveal the workings of government. As a candidate he said he would hold health care meetings in full view of C-SPAN cameras. Yet private, closed-door meetings are still the norm.