Presidential Power and the Modern Presidents

Presidential Power and the Modern Presidents

The Politics of Leadership from Roosevelt to Reagan

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  • Free Press | 
  • 384 pages | 
  • ISBN 9780029227961 | 
  • March 1991
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Chapter 1

Leader or Clerk?

In the United States we like to "rate" a President. We measure him as "weak" or "strong" and call what we are measuring his "leadership." We do not wait until a man is dead; we rate him from the moment he takes office. We are quite right to do so. His office has become the focal point of politics and policy in our political system. Our commentators and our politicians make a specialty of taking the man's measurements. The rest of us join in when we feel "government" impinging on our private lives. In the third quarter of the twentieth century millions of us have that feeling often.

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