Not Making Waves

by Patrick Appel

Obama won by 7 points; FDR by 18. Obama’s talk of boldness, without actual bold proposals, is likely a reflection of his awareness of this hard fact. This is probably a reason that he is willing to yield so far on tax relief in the stimulus package, as an example. If a depression-level event unfolds over the next four years and he is seen as pushing an agenda in opposition to the other party, he will be vulnerable in a way that FDR was not almost no matter what happened.