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Old 02-10-2013, 12:41 AM
630 posts, read 1,128,905 times
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Well, Obama will be a two termer, so before we start speculating the successes or failures of his next four years, let's look at the second term of modern presidents, starting from Truman.

Harry Truman 1949-1953: The biggest issue during his second term was the Korean War. The effort was initially popular, but popular opinion turned against it as the war dragged on and a stalemate seemed to be the inevitable outcome. Truman also faced criticism for being weak on communism during the height of the second red scare. A steel strike and his firing of popular general Douglas MacArthur all contributed to some of the lowest approval ratings of any modern president. Avg 2nd term rating: 36.5%

Dwight Eisenhower 1957-1961: Eisenhower enjoyed a relatively stable second term that ensured high approvals. Economic growth was healthy, despite a few short recessions, as the post war boom continued. On foreign affairs, he was seen as a strong force against communism and the USSR. Domestically, the growing civil rights movement provided challenges for Eisenhower. He ordered troops to integrate Little Rock High School which hurt his popularity in the south. Still, he left office with a great deal of goodwill from the American people. Avg 2nd term rating: 60.5%

Lyndon Johnson 1965-1969: After defeating Barry Goldwater in a landslide, he entered his second term with very high approval ratings. He used his political capital to push through more great society programs, such as the Voting Rights Act, Medicare/Medicaid and the war on poverty. However, as the Vietnam War took a turn for the worse, Johnson's popularity took a huge hit. This period also saw increased racial tension, urban violence and societal instability, for which Johnson was largely blamed. His approvals fell sharply and he declined to run again in 1968. Avg 2nd term rating 50.3%

Richard Nixon 1973-1974: He began his second term riding high after the largest electoral victory in modern history. However, nearly all of Nixon's final years in office were dominated by Watergate. The scandal unraveled slowly and his approval ratings saw a constant decline. Facing impeachment and removal from office, Nixon resigned in August of 1974 amid historically low approval ratings and unprecedented anger from Americans. Avg 2nd term rating 34.4%

Ronald Reagan 1985-1989: The 1980s economic boom buoyed Reagan during the beginning of his second term. However, he was quickly sunk by the Iran Contra scandal. He initially denied involvement, but later admitted responsibility as the scandal grew. He also battled rumors about his mental competence as a result. His approvals sunk to mediocre levels for a great deal of these four years. Still he left office relatively popular. Avg 2nd term rating: 55.3%

Bill Clinton 1997-2001: His second term presided over a huge economic expansion. Unfortunately, most Americans were more focused on the Monica Lewinsky scandal and eventual perjury for which he was impeached. Ironically, his job approval rating hit an all time high at the height of the scandal and his party gained seats in the midterms that year. He left office with the highest approvals of any departing president. Avg 2nd term rating 60.6%

George Bush 2005-2009: Bush enjoyed historic popularity in his first term, but his second term was a polar opposite. His approvals sunk as Americans became increasingly dissatisfied with the long running wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Democrats won control of both houses of congress for the first time in 12 years in 2006. His last two years oversaw the housing collapse and the beginning of the great recession. He left office with the lowest approvals of any departing president. Avg 2nd term rating: 36.5%

Wow, that took a LONG time. I hope yall appreciate it! So which president had the best and worst second term? For best I have to say Clinton. Personal scandals aside, America felt very strong during his last few years in office. We were definitely riding high, and he's one of the few presidents who can definitely say he left America better than when he found it. Worst has to go to Bush. 2008 felt like the end of the world in so many ways and I could feel the anger toward him, even in red Georgia.

So how will Obama's second term compare? What are your predictions?
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Old 02-10-2013, 01:02 AM
Location: Dallas
613 posts, read 951,541 times
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I dont see the economy getting much better and the nation is divided. I still think he'll leave office with high ratings because of his personal pop. As for pres. I do not think he was very good. Alot of talk but not alot of results
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