The Actual Calvin Coolidge
The Actual Ronald Reagan
Recent reports indicate that the Obama Administration has been re-writing the biographies of former Presidents on the White House website. In particular, the Administration has been inserting references in such biographies to President Obama's purported accomplishments. Indeed, the Administration has inserted such references in the biography of each President since Calvin Coolidge, with the exception of the biography of President Gerald Ford.
Not surprisingly, some have criticized this form of self-promotion at the expense of prior Presidents, most of whom are not able to speak for themselves. However, it is no surprise that President Obama would seek to associate himself with leaders like Calvin Coolidge and Ronald Reagan. Simply put, both Presidents had economic records that put the current President to shame. As explained previously on this blog, the Reagan Recovery produced the equivalent of 455,000 jobs per month between April and November 1984. By contrast, the Obama "recovery" is producing jobs at less than a third of that rate. (See here and here.) Moreover, when Calvin Coolidge left office in 1929, the nation's unemployment rate was near 3 percent. Even if the unemployment rate was twice the Coolidge rate, the American People would likely re-elect President Obama in a landslide.