President Obama’s Legacy and Record

Introduction: President Obama’s Legacy and Record

by Michael Grossman, University of Mount Union

A president’s legacy is difficult to gauge while he is still in office and many will argue it is often a task best left to historians, with hindsight allowing us to see the true significance of their policies. It must therefore be acknowledged that any discussion of President Obama’s legacy must be tentative. In one aspect, Obama’s legacy is ensured. One hundred fifty-one years after the American Civil War and fifty-one years after the voting rights act of 1965, the people of the US elected an African-American president. That is an historic event and one that brought with it many promises. Beyond the historic nature of his election, there is much debate over the impact of this president, who campaigned on the promise of hope and change. The articles that follow were originally presented at a conference on President Obama’s legacy held at the University of Mount Union (co-sponsored by the Bliss Institute at the University of Akron) in March 2016. The authors attempt to provide a type of pre-mortem on the Obama presidency, with the acknowledgment the analysis provided and the arguments presented will likely be adjusted and disputed as the years go by.

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PS: Political Science & Politics / Volume 50, Issue 1 / January 2017, pp. 23-26