Barack Obama demonstrated his economic prowess at an extraordinary White House meeting several weeks before he was even elected president. As Jonathan Alter tells it in "The Promise: President Obama, Year One" (Simon & Schuster), this breakout performance occurred at a Sept. 25, 2008, confab requested by the Republican presidential candidate, John McCain.
Near the end, Hurt did raise suspicions that Alter's personal politics may have gotten the better of the narrative:
Still, critics of Mr. Obama may contend that Mr. Alter, who seems moderately liberal in his views, is lending the president a too-sympathetic ear. Mr. Alter repeatedly refers to Mr. Obama's chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel, a fellow Chicagoan, on a first-name basis. And Mr. Alter's summary dismissal of prominent liberal skeptics like the New York Times columnist Paul Krugman and conservative skeptics in general suggests that he is generally in accord with administration policies.