Comparing presidents Hoover and Trump


What makes a president fail? Herbert Hoover, America’s 31st president, was elected in a landslide, but then defeated by FDR. He is best known for becoming deeply unpopular, even hated, for his handling of the widespread poverty caused by the Great Depression. Kenneth Whyte, author of "Hoover: An Extraordinary Life in Extraordinary Times,” joined “Salon Talks” to discuss Hoover’s legacy and what Trump’s approval ratings say overall about the presidential legacy he is building.

Whyte pointed out some positive contributions from Hoover. "If you believe that FDR did some good in fighting the Depression, you have to give some of the credit to Hoover, because Hoover basically built the foundation of the New Deal," Whyte explained. "You don't get from the austerities of the Coolidge years to the interventionisms of the FDR years without having Hoover in between."

Ultimately, though, being a good businessman doesn’t make for a good president, and ultimately failed for Hoover. Watch the video above to hear Whyte draw comparisons to President Trump and read more here. Tune in for SalonTV's live shows, "Salon Talks" and "Salon Stage", daily at noon ET / 9 a.m. PT and 4 p.m. ET / 1 p.m. PT, streaming live on Salon, Facebook and Periscope.

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