Magazine March 22, 2010, Issue

Rowing Upstream

(Roman Genn)
The political difference between Reagan and Obama is that the former gave the public what it wanted

In the wake of Barack Obama’s 2008 election, John Judis of The New Republic declared that the country had completed a Democratic realignment — that American politics had fundamentally shifted to the left. Accordingly, Judis argued, President-elect Obama and his Democratic allies should act boldly:

Americans, to be sure, are always reluctant to undertake ambitious government initiatives. . . . But, as [Franklin] Roosevelt discovered when he was elected, a national crisis creates popular willingness to entertain dramatic initiatives. Moreover, Obama will not face the same formidable adversaries that Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton had to confront. The Republican Party will

Jay Cost is a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and the Center for Faith and Freedom at Grove City College.

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