Under the header “It’s All On Obama Now” Los Angeles Times columnist Peter Nichols writes:
Every president inherits a tangle of problems from his predecessor. War and recession, natural disaster and foreign crises. And for some undefined interval, new presidents argue that they should not be accountable for the troubles that arose on another’s watch.
But inevitably, responsibility shifts. And for Obama, that time came last week, bringing both greater opportunities and greater risks.
On the economy, Obama won approval Wednesday of a $3.5-trillion budget plan that aims to help pull the country out of the worst recession in decades. It also smooths the way for one of the president’s signature domestic priorities — overhauling the nation’s healthcare system.
At the same time, the budget projects a whopping $1.2-trillion deficit in 2010, undercutting Obama’s ability to bemoan Bush-era red ink.
“It is now absolutely his economy,” said Paul Light, a New York University professor who specializes in presidential transitions. “I don’t think that the public will continue to believe that this was all George W. Bush’s doing. And every day that goes by, it becomes more Obama’s than Bush’s.”