This is one thing that just sticks in my craw - the whole Blame the Party of whoever is in charge, regardless of what actually lead to the economy. Clinton didn't do anything to make the economy that he inherited when he was President. The tech boom was happening (and Al Gore did not invent the internet!
), the policies of Reagan and Bush41 were paying dividends, and the policies that would eventually lead to the current collapse of the economy (forcing banks to give out bad loans so the disadvantaged had a chance to loose the American Dream, which was enacted during the Clinton administration) were making money, not losing yet. Look, I'm not saying that Bush did much good with the economy. He didn't. He really didn't actually do
much of anything until this disgusting "bail out" was needed to keep the whole economy from failing (which isn't working, and they aren't even keeping to what they proposed anyway). That was truly his biggest failing, IMO.
But that's also why the GOP deserves part of the blame for the crisis we're in now. Yes, some of them tried to do something, but not with any real force or leadership or foresight as to how bad this would really be. And when we did have the Republican Congress, it was only by a few votes. There were enough who were getting nice kickbacks from the banks and Fannie and Freddie on both sides
that they couldn't get it passed. When oversight was proposed, the Dems did everything they could to get it blocked. And it was enough - there wasn't enough of a majority to override those who "crossed the aisle" because of kickbacks and sweet money-making deals to get it done, and Bush and the GOP leadership (for what it was) didn't make it a priority.
And when Obama takes office and the economy is still tanking, his ratings will probably be low because he isn't fixing it fast enough (like by January 21st). And when the economy starts to recover, whether or not he had anything to do with it or if the Bush Bailouts actually work, he'll get the credit for being the Messiah and leading the US to the Promised Land.
I have no doubt that the economy will recover, I just have no idea how long or what we can do to get there faster. I guess that's "above my pay rate".
But I honestly doubt that Obama himself will have a lot to do with it, just as McCain wouldn't have had a lot to do with it had he been elected. The President himself really doesn't affect the economy all that much. Congress has a much bigger impact, but they always seem to get a pass on the blame or the glory.