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Federalist No. 70: Where Does the Public Service Begin and End?


Janine R. Wedel is a professor in the School of Public Policy at George Mason University and a senior research fellow at the New America Foundation. Winner of the prestigious Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order, her books include Shadow Elite: How the World's New Power Brokers Undermine Democracy, Government, and the Free Market (2009) and Collision and Collusion: The Strange Case of Western Aid to Eastern Europe (2001).


Federalist No. 70 argues that presidents will rise above factions through their power to assemble a government composed of highly motivated, accountable officers. The author confronts this assumption through a detailed examination of the heavy use of contractors in today’s administrative state. She documents the challenges and dangers associated with the role of contractors to execute the laws through broad mandates. An appendix to Federalist No. 70 offers a series of tweets that would introduce needed reforms in the hidden workforce of contractors.