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February 12th, 2009
01:46 PM ET

Learning from Lincoln

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Editor’s Note: You can read more Jami Floyd blogs on “In Session.”

Jami Floyd
AC360° Contributor
In Session Anchor

Today is the 200th anniversary of the birth of Abraham Lincoln, who won the election of 1860 against all odds, freed the slaves and saved the Union. And those are just the highlights. Of course no leader is perfect, but even with his many faults Lincoln was arguably our greatest president.

Now, 150 years after his death, the historical ironies and comparisons to our new president are hard to ignore: Both young senators from Illinois with little experience; both tall and lanky; both powerful orators. Most of all, both men prove that with hard work, relentless study and industriousness, humble beginnings are no barrier to success.


Like Lincoln, President Obama seems wise beyond his years. And he would be wise, indeed, to learn from Lincoln’s mistakes as well as his triumphs.

We cannot possibly know what the future holds for Barack Obama or for the United States. But the lessons our 44th president takes from our 16th will help to see him through. Lincoln’s determination to preserve our union is still needed today as we face new and extraordinary challenges.

They say the times make the man. But in truth, it is the way that a person responds to events that really defines greatness. That is the lesson of Lincoln.


Filed under: Jami Floyd • President Barack Obama
soundoff (6 Responses)
  1. Joanne Pacicca, Solvay, NY

    Lincoln acted by the extraordinary combination of ethics and vision. Obama's process is the same. Like many others, let's hope the Republican politico doesn't defeat the vast purpose.

    Truly the bi-partisanship demonstrated most recently by Gregg, could destroy this nation and damage the globe!

    February 12, 2009 at 9:45 pm |
  2. Ken

    Obama is the right man at the right time. The problem is that Republican's will destroy an opportunity for America's recovery through fratricide. The care more about partisan politics than they do about the best interests of Americans. Shame on them....

    February 12, 2009 at 6:47 pm |
  3. barbara

    Obama: wise beyond his years? Not

    February 12, 2009 at 6:39 pm |
  4. Teresa, OH

    Abe was the greatest and bravest American that ever lived, IMHO.

    February 12, 2009 at 6:21 pm |
  5. Annie Kate

    Lincoln was a good orator but I think Obama is a better one – the inspiration in Obama's speeches is infectious and builds confidence.

    February 12, 2009 at 3:32 pm |
  6. Michael "C" Lorton, Virginia

    Lincoln's character determined his destiny---and so will Obama's.

    February 12, 2009 at 2:54 pm |