Historian and Nation contributor Eric Foner appeared on CNN’s Parker/Spitzer to compare and contrast Abraham Lincoln and Barack Obama, and map out the ways that Obama’s presidency could be redeemed if he pays closer attention to Lincoln’s example.

Lincoln also suffered heavy losses during a midterm election, and came under pressure from voters afraid of losing their jobs. Yet he still found a way to play to his values, and grew during his time in office.  In short, he learned when not to compromise.

Eric Foner is the author of The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln And American Slavery. You can read his contributions to The Nation here.

Braden Goyette