Conventional wisdom describes the "modern presidency" as an institution with more political authority and autonomy than its "traditional" nineteenth-century predecessor. A central claim is that since the rise of the modern executive establishment, presidents have had an incentive to "politicize" and "centralize" their authority within the executive branch. Examining three lesser-known pre-modern presidents, we argue that the tendency for presidents to politicize and centralize is neither distinctly modern nor particularly extraordinary. Rather, it is a fundamental presidential impulse that finds its roots in the ambiguous form of executive power in America.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Sociology and Political Science