One must presume he meant it is the example for the whole country, despite its literal meaning not really having anything to do with that. In any case, it is an example of the country. President Obama's suggestion, as seen through beer-goggle laser surgery, is that America is doing as well as Chicago. There is a "smidgen" of truth in his words.
America as a whole does look a lot like Illinois, but Illinois does not look like the President's fond memories.
The 'Land of Lincoln' laments, not boasts, 300,000 fewer jobs since the Great Recession. Reports indicate, that his puts the fledgling home of Lincoln, Al Capone, and Obama in dead last in recovering from employment losses. However, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program or the popular acronym SNAP, has seen a surge of enrollments.
The beauty of individual states, and one of the arguments for States' Rights, people are voting with their feet. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, 95,000 people ditched Illinois in 2014 alone. The reason? No Jobs. The reason for NO jobs? High Taxation.
Which is quite unsurprising in a state that has primarily voted Big 'D' for decades.
In 2011, for example, Illinois raised the state income tax, which robbed their taxpayers of $31 billion collectively. Currently, like a few other boneheaded states, they are eying a Minimum Wage hike. Despite the fact that they already have the fourth highest minimum wage in the U.S. Chicago, a city still running rampant with corruption and being lead by an Obama-Drone Rahm Emmanuel, is set to raise their minimum wage to $13 per hour by 2019.
In a sad twist of irony, Illinois minorities have actually been hit by these Big 'D' and Lefty policies the hardest.
Cornell University studies show that losses in employment from minimum wage hikes hit black-Americans four times as hard. Black-American unemployment, specifically, is 25 percent. Black Illinois residents saw their employment drop by 10 percent, at the same time, Hispanic employment fell by 8.7 percent between 06' and 13'.
Illinois, as far as high taxes and voting people running out the state, is only closely rivaled by New York and New Jersey. Which proves that it is Leftist-Progressivism of wealth redistribution, high taxes, and excessive governmental intervention in the economy.
Whether, Big 'D'(Establishment Democrat) or Big 'R'(Establishment Republican), big government fails where private enterprise succeeds. If President Obama is correct, and Illinois and its cohorts are the "microcosm" of the country, we all might want to consider moving.
Good thing, 'We The People', are the employers and all we have to do is fire the delinquent employees. Well, that is if they realize it before it is too late.