Tuesday, September 7, 2010

2010 the new 1982? Maybe..

There has been some talk as of late about how the current political and economical situations of this year is comparable to those of 1982 during President Reagan. On the surface, the comparison is definitely interesting and seems quite convincing but is it really a good comparision? The people at PolitiFact has done so checking for themselves, and found the comparison to be "Mostly True" on their 'truth-o-meter'. I am inclined to agree based on these facts:

1. New President- Both Obama and Reagan succeeded unpopular Presidents (Bush and Carter), and we quite popular in the first year or so of their presidencies because of this. However, Reagan like Obama, saw their popularity among the American people drop half-way through their first terms.

2. Economy- Both Presidents came in at the beginning of recessions and experience high umemployment rates going into the fall midterms, which had reprecussions on their popularity and their party's success in the fall.

3. Midterms- Both Presidents experienced losses of their party's standing in Congress, though in Reagan's case the Republicans were in the minority and still lost seats in the fall whereas Obama's Democratic Party is in control of both houses of Congress and is likely to lose control of at least one house.

That is where the comparison ends, because while not set in stone, its likely the Democrats will lose control of the House of Representatives this fall and possibly even the Senate (though that is far from certain). Reagan came into office with Democrats controlling the House so he was already an "opposition" President, whereas Obama should have been in a more controlling position. While President Obama has had some legislative success, Republicans (especially in the Senate) have been fairly effective is causing Democrats problems.

Another part of the comparison is that even though Reagan's popularity was diminished in 1982 and his party lost seats, he was still able to win re-election (rather easily) in 1984 and Obama supporters believe that such success could be duplicated by President Obama in 2012. Whether this is true or not I don't know but I do agree the comparison is definitely relevant.

Here is the original Fact-Check by PolitiFact, read it and judge for yourself..

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