Thursday, July 16, 2009

Obama and Historians

Obama's Secret Meeting With Historians

The president held a dinner at the White House for leading presidential scholars

Posted July 10, 2009
President Obama has found another way to break out of the White House "bubble"—holding private discussions with eminent historians who have studied the successes and failures of his predecessors. His goal is to better understand what has worked and what has failed in the past as he makes policy today.
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Obama held a dinner at the White House residence with nine such scholars on June 30, and it turned out to be what one participant described as a "history book club, with the president as the inquisitor." Among those attending were Michael Beschloss, H. W. Brands, Douglas Brinkley, Robert Dallek, and Doris Kearns Goodwin. Obama asked the guests to discuss the presidencies that they were most familiar with and to give him insights into what remains relevant to the problems of today.
At one point, the discussion turned to whether Obama was trying to do too much too fast and whether he might overload the political circuits of Congress.

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