U.S. President Barack Obama's decision to cancel his scheduled trip to Asia this weekend risks undermining the country's standing with regional allies and trust that he earned during his first term, according to a political analyst.
"If Obama does not go to Asia at all, allies and partners in the region will worry that the United States is incapable of sustaining high-level engagement due to political paralysis at home," Ernest Z. Bower, chair of Southeast Asia studies and co-director of Pacific Partners Initiative at the Center for Strategic & International Studies (CSIS) wrote in a note.
"(This) will cause hedging behavior by governments worried about U.S. staying power, and may result in more aggressive postures by nations interested in exploring the limits of U.S. determination," he added. On his first post-election foreign trip in 2012, Obama visited Southeast Asia as part of a refocusing of U.S. attention on Asia-Pacific.
Late on Thursday, the President called off a trip to Indonesia and Brunei, after cancelling visits to Malaysia and the Philippines earlier in the week.
(Read more: Barack Obama cancels trip to Asia)
In what was originally a four-nation Asian tour planned to begin this Saturday, the president was scheduled to visit Indonesia to attend the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) summit and then Brunei for the annual meeting of Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).