John Feehery apologizes to Michael Bechloss over presidential rankings remarkHistorians in the News
tags: Barack Obama, Ronald Reagan, The Hill, presidential rankings, John Feehery, Michael Beschloss
John Feehery is President of Communications and Director of Government Affairs for Quinn Gillespie and Associates, Washington, D.C.'s top public affairs firm.
I recently wrote an article about the legacy of Barack Obama, and I wrongly threw Michael Beschloss, the presidential historian, under the bus.
This is what I wrote:
“Historians will rate President Barack Obama as one of our nation’s greatest presidents. The question is: Was he any good? That the history profession is dominated by a liberal elite comes as no surprise. Robert Dallek, Arthur Schleschinger, Doris Kearns Goodwin and Michael Beschloss would all rank both Jack Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson toward the top of the list, and Ronald Reagan toward the bottom. George W. Bush will never, ever get his due for how he handled the 9/11 attacks as he passed landmark education and Medicare legislation or for his remarkable commitment to fighting AIDS in Africa.”
Mr. Beschloss wrote to correct the record: “It is in no way accurate that I would rank Ronald Reagan at the bottom of great presidents. I would direct you to, for instance, the introduction I did for the book on the RR Library (The Presidential Portfolio, PublicAffairs 2003) or the piece I wrote for Newsweek about President Reagan when he died in 2004 … Could you please correct this in print? People learn from what you write and I would not like to have this misapprehension go uncorrected for your audience.”...
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