President and economy: The limits of power

Q: Can (or should) a president change the economy by sheer assertion and executive order?

Bob’s answer: NO.

If you look at Presidents Reagan and Clinton, they performed best economically when compared to all recent presidents. Neither of them operated by executive order, rather, by asserting themselves in the areas of domestic spending that would most benefit the economy. Differences in performance come down to luck more than policy. When volatile energy and food components are stripped out of inflation calculations, prices in the U.S. don’t rise or fall under particular administrations.

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