Perhaps Reagan was chosen because he was also president during a major recession. But I've always thought we needed to be clear about the fact that a recession based on oil shortages (which was the case in the 1980's) is very different from a recession based on a collapse of the financial markets - which is what President Obama inherited. The only other time our country has faced the latter, we suffered the Great Depression. But be that as it may.
Hartung uses data on job creation, economic growth and investment to make his case. For example, at this point in Reagan's presidency, the unemployment rate was 7.1%. It wouldn't get to the mid-low 6% range (where it is now under Obama) for another year. I won't copy and paste all the rest - you can click the link and see the charts. But along the way, he includes some things I've never seen mentioned before.
- Reagan had the benefit of a growing Boomer class to ignite economic growth, while Obama has been forced to deal with a retiring workforce developing special needs,
- Obama reduced the debt, while it skyrocketed under Reagan,
- Obama reduced federal employment, which grew under Reagan,
- Obama kept inflation low - even as European economies bordered on failure.
WOW! Put all that together and President Obama's performance really is quite amazing. All that's left is to wonder why no one but Hartung seems to be noticing.