Plenty of presidents have faced enormous pressure

  • Wednesday, February 4, 2009 1:34pm

While I appreciate the sentiment of Jocelyn Robinson’s column, that no one faces the weight of governance like Mr. Obama now does, I am distressed by her perspective and apparent forgetfulness of history (“Time for the real work to begin,” Jan. 21). To answer her question, “Has any president taken office during such tumultuous times?” Yes, those she named have, and many others. James K. Polk, our 11th president for instance, faced — right or wrong — decisions of war with Mexico and England, plus with the Indian nations. He, too, was in an economic crunch. He had to “deal with the representatives of the extreme ends of the political spectrum.” And things like military insubordination and betrayal of friendship plagued him. I could go on, but you get the idea. That’s politics. That’s what a president is faced with, a dangerous world, dramatically different vying interests, and only barely enough money when our leaders are fiscally responsible, which is too seldom.

I hope that Mr. Obama (and we) will not have to face the overwhelming problems and decisions that Mr. Bush had to face in his both terms, a death blow to 3,000 innocent Americans in one morning, and the defense of the remaining 300 million in the face of incredible terrorist plots. Thank God those plots have at present been contained, so that our president has primarily to maintain our security and work on the way-out-of-control budget. Pressure, yes. Unparalleled, no.

Janette Lemme’

Lake Forest Park

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