AUTHOR'S NOTE: The author appreciates suggestions and comments from David Gray Adler, Lee Fisher, Nancy Kassop, Walter Oleszek, and Richard Pious.
A Dose of Law and Realism for Presidential Studies
Article first published online: 21 APR 2004
Presidential Studies Quarterly
Volume 32, Issue 4, pages 672–692, December 2002
How to Cite
Fisher, L. (2002), A Dose of Law and Realism for Presidential Studies. Presidential Studies Quarterly, 32: 672–692. doi: 10.1111/j.0360-4918.2002.00240.x
- Issue published online: 21 APR 2004
- Article first published online: 21 APR 2004
- Cited By
Despite Tom Cronin's critique more than three decades ago objecting to theheroic qualities routinely assigned to the presidency, scholarly works and public debate continue to place the president on an artificially high pedestal. Students leave the university believing that the president–compared to Congress–represents the national interest, has special expertise and wisdom (especially in foreign affairs), and is more apt to protect the public purse andrestrain spending. These generalizations find no support in what we know about the two institutions. Those who write about the presidency need to look beneath the glowing generalizations to see some disturbing weaknesses. Why do we think so highly of the presidency when the individual occupants of the White House have been, to put it mildly, a mixed lot?