Sentences We Were Obliged to Finish: 'Barack Obama Demonstrated his Economic Prowess...'

In the book review section of Sunday's Business page, contributor Harry Hurt III relayed big chunks of Newsweek reporter Jonathan Alter's flattering new biography of Barack Obama, "The Promise: President Obama, Year One." Hurt focused on Obama's tackling of the bailout plan and the later stimulus package. Obama positively glowed in the telling of Alter/Hunt:

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.