During his first presidential press conference, Barack Obama defended federal economic intervention, stating "there are several who have suggested that FDR was wrong to intervene back in the New Deal. They are fighting battles that I thought were resolved a pretty long time ago." "We were just amazed to hear him say that," says historian Anita Folsom. While this "idea is taught in colleges all over the country, we have to come to the realization that these big government ideas do not lead to prosperity."
The Folsoms see Roosevelt's big government approach as instrumental in shaping the modern world. From ObamaCare to the Community Reinvestment Act, they draw a direct line from FDR's actions to the worst public policies of today, along with the general view that "government programs are the solution to economic and political problems."