Historians rank Obama our 12th best president

  A C-SPAN survey of 91 presidential historians ranks Barack Obama as the 12th best U.S. president in the nation’s history. Abraham Lincoln was ranked at the top of the list, followed in order by George Washington and the two Roosevelts, Franklin and Theodore. The worst were James Buchanan and Andrew Johnson, the presidents who served just before and just after Lincoln. Some presidents rise or fall in these periodic surveys of historians. Ulysses Grant, for example, has moved from the bottom quarter of the pack to the middle in the...

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What will wingnuts do now that Obama is gone?

  Today’s transfer of power in the White House is fraught with ironies, not the least of which is that polls show that the outgoing president is much more popular than the new guy. More to the point, the departure of Barack Obama deprives the right-wing crazies, a noisy minority, of the principal target of their political invective. The time has passed for Obama to do all the evil deeds the wackos have long predicted. He wasn’t born in Africa. He’s not a Muslim.  He didn’t seize everyone’s guns. He...

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Obama has less than a week to take away our guns

  With only a few days left in Barack Obama’s presidency, one wonders if the paranoid bed-wetters at the National Rifle Association are still afraid that the jack-booted thugs in his employ will soon descend upon our homes to seize all our firearms. Indeed, one wonders why anyone ever had any such fears. Never once did Obama ever propose a blanket ban on guns. Most of the measures he’s advocated — stronger background checks for firearms purchases, for example — are supported by a majority of Americans.  But Wayne...

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Trump makes Obama look truly great

  In my book, Barack Obama has been a pretty good president, especially considering the obstacles placed in his way by shameless Republicans in Congress and by right-wing kooks in the underbelly of the Internet. But Obama is downright great when you compare him to his immediate successor, Donald John Trump. Granted, Trump has not yet taken office, but when he finally takes the oath next week, his lack of popularity will be worse than any other newly elected president in American history. Meanwhile, Obama leaves office on a wave of pretty...

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Most Americans don’t blame Obama for the nation’s problems

  Lost in all the news this week about other matters are the results of a poll showing that President Obama’s popularity now stands at about the level Ronald Reagan enjoyed at the same juncture of his second term. According to a new CNN/ORC poll, 55 percent of Americans approve of Obama’s job performance.  That makes seven straight months in which the president’s popularity has been in positive territory, the longest streak since 2009, his first year in office. By contrast, the approval rating for Congress, which is...

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