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AP Gov Chapter 8: The Presidency

Overview
by

Michael Hamilton

on 2 December 2013

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Transcript of AP Gov Chapter 8: The Presidency

The Presidency
Reading #34: Federalist No. 70
Let's discuss. . . .
Roots of the Presidency
The Constitutional Powers of the President
Article II is quite short and details few powers for the president.
the “executive power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America”
Appointment Power
ambassadors, public ministers, consuls, judges of the federal courts (including Supreme Court justices), and other officers
About 3,500 appointments, + military
Setting the agenda for the nation and formulating policies
Broad influence
Cabinet: advisory group selected by the president to help him make decisions and execute the law
The Power to Convene Congress
Inform Congress on the state of the Union—annual televised address
Treaties. . . .
The Power to Make Treaties
2/3 of Senate must vote to ratify
Receives ambassadors to formally recognize the existence of a country
Executive agreements: enter into secret and sensitive arrangements with foreign countries without Senate approval
Can "unsign" treaties
Reject any congressional legislation either through a general veto or a pocket veto
Threat of veto influences law-making
Takes 2/3 of both houses-override veto
Pocket Veto
Veto Power
The Pardoning Power
Check on the judiciary
Grant reprieves or pardons releasing an individual from the punishment or legal consequences of a crime before or after conviction and restoring all rights and privileges of citizenship.
A


C

T

V

M


P
Commander-in-Chief of the Military
"take care that the Laws be faithfully executed"
1964, Congress acknowledged President Johnson's warmaking authority by authorizing massive troop commitments
War Powers Act
George W. Bush/Iraq/2002 - sought and got Joint Resolution
APPLES

CANNOT

TASTE

VERY

MINTY,

PEOPLE.
Created by Michael Hamilton, 2/2012
Sources:
O'Connor, Karen, Larry J. Sabato, and Alixandria Yanus. American Government: Roots and Reform. 2011 Advanced Placement ed. Boston: Pearson Longman, 2011.
O'Connor, Karen, ed. American Government: Readings and Cases. 2nd Ed. New York: Addison Wesley Longman, 2001
For other sources, see hyperlinks in presentation.
The Constitutional Powers of the President
One example of the media bringing the public closer to the president is when President Clinton was asked whether he wore boxers or briefs. Another example would be President Obama’s recent appearance on a nationally televised tribute to what American entertainer?
This we know: “Energy of the Executive is a leading character in the definition of good government. It is essential to the protection of the community against foreign attacks; it is not less essential to the steady administration of the laws; to the protection of property . . . to the security of liberty against enterprises and assaults of ambition, of faction and of anarchy.” -- The Federalist #70, Alexander Hamilton
Yet the Framers did not envision such a powerful role. . . .
Nor could they foresee the role of the media. . . .
They did foresee that the president must forge links among the PEOPLE, CONGRESS, and FOREIGN LEADERS.
There is (and has been) a tension between PUBLIC EXPECTATIONS about the presidency and FORMAL POWERS of the president.
Earliest examples of executive power
Elected governor (Winthrop)
Royal governor (appointed)

General distrust of executive power, for obvious reasons (KG3).
Governor typically at odds with colonists.
Some governors elected by populace, though.

Q. How did early action on behalf of the U.S. reveal distrust of executives?
A. Articles of Confederation . . . weaknesses of “president” and of central government. And of course, the Antifederalists were not silent. . . .
*Pictures not necessarily drawn to scale.
What do you know of constitutional requirements for the Executive? What ideas were discussed but ultimately discarded? Did the Framers model the federal Executive after any state constitutions?
The Development & Expansion of Presidential Power
Among this president's other achievements were :
putting down the Whiskey Rebellion (thereby establishing the primacy of the national government and federal tax law),

establishing the Cabinet, and underscoring that it is the president that negotiates treaties; the senate only ratifies them (or not).

He also was the first to argue for "inherent powers" of the presidency, defending his declaration of neutrality concerning a tale of two cities. . . .
This president was . . .
the first who was not from Virginia or Massachusetts, and therefore deemed the first to represent the common man (rather than the landowning or educated)

the first to use his veto aggressively (i.e., 12 times, surpassing the combined total of 10 by his previous 6 successors)

And even when his VP sided with his state rather than his country on nullification, this president stood his ground.
Exercising what he believed were inherent powers to "take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed," this president
suspended the writ of habeas corpus

expanded the army beyond Congressionally mandated ceilings

closed the mail to treasonable correspondence

blockaded ports without Congress's approval

disregarded what he considered "technicalities" that stood in his way of fulfilling his constitutional duty
This president . . .
said that "this nation asks for action and action now,"
asked Congress for and received "broad executive powers to wage a war against the emergency" of the times--albeit not an actual war.
His effect on the office?
1. Created a new bureaucracy;
2. Expanded role from mere executive to policymaker, largely setting the legislative agenda.
3. Brought office closer to the people using media/technology
This president said of his successor,"He'll sit here and he'll say, 'Do this! Do that!' And nothing will happen. Poor Ike--it won't be a bit like the army. He'll find it very frustrating."
The Presidential Establishment
Let's outline the structure. Who does what?
The Vice President
Adams: "the most insignificant office that was the invention of man . . . or his imagination conceived."
Duties: 1. Have a pulse. 2. Chair the Senate (but not usually).
Ticket-balancer
Only recently has the office seen more than ceremonial power. Presidents Carter, George W. Bush, and Obama have used their VPs to help to help govern.
The Cabinet
Consitution II.2: ". . . he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any Subject relating to the Duties of their respective of Offices."
Advise, help execute laws.
Some were the long-term result of pressure from interest groups. As the executive's agenda expanded, so did the Cabinet (Agriculture, Commerce, Labor, Education, et al.)
Cabinet size has expanded, overall reliance on secretaries has decreased.
More on the bureacracy later. . . .
FDR created it to help administer New Deal programs
Now it includes several advisory and policy-making agencies and task forces
EOP
NCS - National Security Council - 1947 - Advises president on military and foreign policy - President, VP, SecState, SecDef, SecTreas . . . + Chairman of the Joint Chiefs and Director of the CIA . . . + Chief of Staff . . . + general counsel. . . .
Council of Economic Advisors
President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board (2009)
Office of Management and Budget
Office of the Vice President
Office of the U.S. Trade Representative
Chief of Staff
Facilitates smooth running of the Executive branch
Direct access to President, no Senate confirmation, directly responsible to the president.
Size of staff: 1943= 51; 1953 = 247; 1972 = 583; 2012 = about 490.
First Lady
Informal advisors, influencers of public opinion, and significant contributers to American society
Abigail Adams (much like my wife :) ) was a treasury of wisdom for her husband.
Edith Bolling Galt Wilson controlled access to President Wilson when he became partially paralyzed in 1919. Dubbed "Acting First Man."
Eleanor Roosevelt wrote a nationally syndicated DAILY newspaper column and continued to work as a public champion of human rights and Democratic Party agenda items
First Lady Michelle Obama, a lawyer and former administrator at the University of Chicago Medical Center, has priortized health and fitness, stressing healthy school lunches and the problem of childhood obesity
President Clinton to the media: "You know why I can stif you on the press conferences? Because Larry King liberated me from you by giving me to the American people directly."

President Obama is the first sitting president to appear on Letterman and The View.

Don't frown. If you must, though, frown fairly. Did anyone catch Mitt Romney doing the Top Ten recently?
Since Lyndon Johnson, only 4 presidents have left office with aproval ratings of more than 50%.
Ratings highest in the first year. This is when presidents push their most ambitious policy objectives.
Each action the president takes is divisive; for every achievement has opposition.
Even party members grow less tractable when a president's ratings drop, so that they are not aligning themselves with a potential loser (i.e., campaign loser)
President George W. Bush's ratings ranged from 91% to 26%.
The President and Public Opinion
"Going public" - directly appealing to the electorate to gain support for agenda items in order to increase chances of Congressional approval
Polling and Public Approval
President as Policy Maker
Working with Congress
Recall FDR's role in expanding executive powers in include actively setting the legislative agenda

Consider the 104th Congress. Gingrich's Contract with America. Republicans called for Congress to reduce the size of government and take back the legislative reigns. . . .

. . . but several Republican Congresses failed to pass many of the items, and President Clinton exerted strong control over the budget and legislative processes

"Without constant attention from the administration, most legislation moves through the congressional process at the speed of a glacier." --President Lyndon B. Johnson

Johnson again: "You've got to give it all you can, that first year . . . before they start worrying about themselves. . . . You can't put anything through when half the Congress is thinking how to beat you."
Setting the Budget
Budget proposal indicates initiative priorities
Budget was framed as Congress's prerogative . . . but again, enter the Depression and FDR
FDR's Bureau of the Budget --> Nixon's Office of Management and Budget (OMB), part of the EOP. The OMB consists of hundreds of budget and policy experts that help write proposals and give economic forecasts to the president
Exeutive Orders
Rules or regulations issued by the president that have the force of law
Many are issued to clarify or implement legislation passed by Congress.
Others make new policy--military desegregation, afirmative action, creation of White House Council of Women and Girls
"Signing statements" are similar to EOs, but they are distinct in that they "name" policy rather than set it. Presidents with reservations about laws they are signing often include signing statements. President George W. Bush issued signing statements to express that he deemed portions of 1200 laws unconstitutional would not enforce them.
A

CHIEF

TAXES

VERY

MANY

PEOPLE.
Follow up: Caleb: Why are Ron Paul supporters so YOUNG? Some suggestions, easily Googled :)
He's relentless
He's a traditionalist without being a traditional politician, but folks are realizing in 2012 that traditional politicians led us into our present crisis.
He is fiscally conservative, yet socially tolerant . . . like our youth? (i.e., ages 18-25?)
He is correct--i.e., his predictions about the financial crisis
Young people have their lives ahead of them; they want the government out of their way so that they can max out their lives.
Paul makes politics look cool. He reminds folks that the Constitution is about the people, so he makes them feel that they play a role in their political fate
Review--What did Reading #35, "The Art of Statecraft," by James Sterling Young, say about Jefferson's use of his Cabinet members--especially regarding the president's influence upon the legislative agenda?
Article. II.
Among this president's other achievements were putting down the Whiskey Rebellion (thereby establishing the primacy of the national government and federal tax law), establishing the Cabinet, and underscoring that it is the president that negotiates treaties; the senate only ratifies them (or not). He also was the first to argue for "inherent powers" of the presidency, defending his declaration of neutrality concerning a tale of two cities. . . .
This president was . . .the first who was not from Virginia or Massachusetts, and therefore deemed the first to represent the common man (rather than the landowning or educated); the first to use his veto aggressively (i.e., 12 times, surpassing the combined total of 10 by his previous 6 successors); and even when his VP sided with his state rather than his country on nullification, this president stood his ground.
Exercising what he believed were inherent powers to "take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed," this president suspended the writ of habeas corpus, expanded the army beyond Congressionally mandated ceilings, closed the mail to treasonable correspondence, blockaded ports without Congress's approval, and disregarded what he considered "technicalities" that stood in his way of fulfilling his constitutional duty.
This president . . . said that "this nation asks for action and action now," asked Congress for and received "broad executive powers to wage a war against the emergency" of the times--albeit not an actual war. His effect on the office? 1. Created a new bureaucracy; 2. Expanded role from mere executive to policymaker, largely setting the legislative agenda. 3. Brought office closer to the people using media/technology
This president said of his successor,"He'll sit here and he'll say, 'Do this! Do that!' And nothing will happen. Poor Ike--it won't be a bit like the army. He'll find it very frustrating."
Full transcript