Is Obama Doing Too Much Too Soon?

He announced a timeline to end the U.S. troop presence in Iraq -- albeit not as quickly as promised in the campaign -- and approved 17,000 new troops to Afghanistan, while kick starting diplomatic relations with Russia, Iran and Syria.

Historically, how does all this activity measure up to previous presidents?

"We won't know for some time, qualitatively, Quantitatively, you would have to call it Rooseveltian," said historian Richard Norton Smith.

Even though he's earned praise for acting quickly on pertinent issues, some question Obama's attempt to do so much at once and whether tackling so many issues could result in policies that are undercooked.

"Presidents have many problems to solve, but no one ever suggested that the wisest course is to try to solve them all at once," Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., said on the Senate floor Monday.

"I think we have to be careful, not overload the economy," Sen. Richard Shelby, R-Ala., said on "This Week with George Stephanopoulos." "Our thrust should be turning the economy around, and we do that through banks, getting people back to work."

Of course, many take issue with the substance of these plans, saying that the president is spending too much and getting too little bang for the buck. Democratic economist Mark Zandi told House Democrats today that the stimulus package will likely result in 1 million fewer jobs created than the 3.5 million jobs the administration predicted.

For his part, Obama doesn't look like he is backing down soon. He had made it clear, even before winning the presidency, that it's important for the commander in chief to present himself to the American people.

"It is going to be part of the president's job to deal with more than one thing at once," he said in Florida in September.

"I know there are some who believe we can only handle one challenge at a time," Obama stated today. "They forget that Lincoln helped lay down the transcontinental railroad, passed the Homestead Act, and created the National Academy of Sciences in the midst of Civil War. Likewise, President Roosevelt didn't have the luxury of choosing between ending a Depression and fighting a war. President Kennedy didn't have the luxury of choosing between civil rights and sending us to the moon. And we don't have the luxury of choosing between getting our economy moving now and rebuilding it over the long term."

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