Jon Meacham Says Lincoln, FDR Never Tried To ‘Rebuild America On An Executive Order’ (VIDEO)

The crew on “Morning Joe” once again turned to Jon Meacham on Thursday to provide an historical context for the show’s steady drumbeat of conventional wisdom, and the Pulitzer Prize-winning author sounded pretty skeptical of President Obama’s pledge to take more executive actions.

“We make fun of the executive orders and that is in fact something that — you know, you never really heard Lincoln and FDR say, ‘I’m going to rebuild America on an executive order,” Meacham said. “You know, it’s not something that resonates off the tongue.”

Meacham’s take was somewhat baffling. Franklin Delano Roosevelt issued more executive orders than any president —3,522 to be exact and 1,719 more than the next closest president — including several that helped usher in New Deal programs. And Abraham Lincoln, of course, issued a pretty famous executive order known as the Emancipation Proclamation.

Update: In an interview with TPM, Meacham acknowledged that he messed up.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Kludt is a reporter for Talking Points Memo based in New York City, covering media and national affairs. Originally from South Dakota, Tom joined TPM as an intern in late-2011 and became a staff member during the 2012 election. He can be reached at tom@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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