The New Teflon President

Flummoxed by Ronald Reagan’s enduring popularity in the face of a string of unsettling foreign and domestic developments, Pat Schroeder, then a Democratic congresswoman from Colorado, took to the House floor in 1983 and said of the first-term president: “He has been perfecting the Teflon-coated presidency: He sees to it that nothing sticks to him.”
Her comment was meant to be disparaging, but in coining the term “Teflon president,” Schroeder actually identified a significant phenomenon in politics—the willingness of voters to excuse in some politicians shortcomings that they wouldn’t accept in most others.
Comparisons between Reagan and Barack Obama have been