AUTHOR'S NOTE: Earlier versions of this paper received constructive comments at seminars at the Department of Comparative Politics, University of Bergen, and at the 2007 American Politics Group Annual Conference, University of Leicester. Thanks are due to Mike Alvarez, Tim H. Blessing, Richard J. Ellis, Sandra Halverson, Tor Midtb, Bill Shaffer, Kristin Strmsnes, Lars Svåsand, Eirik Vestrheim, and two anonymous reviewers for useful comments.
The Contemporary Presidency: And We Will Know Their Greatness by the Trail of Controversy: Washington, Lincoln, and Franklin D. Roosevelt and Their Increasingly Contested Successors
Article first published online: 21 JUL 2008
© 2008 Center for the Study of the Presidency
Presidential Studies Quarterly
Volume 38, Issue 3, pages 476–490, September 2008
How to Cite
GRENDSTAD, G. (2008), The Contemporary Presidency: And We Will Know Their Greatness by the Trail of Controversy: Washington, Lincoln, and Franklin D. Roosevelt and Their Increasingly Contested Successors. Presidential Studies Quarterly, 38: 476–490. doi: 10.1111/j.1741-5705.2008.02656.x
- Issue published online: 21 JUL 2008
- Article first published online: 21 JUL 2008
Presidential scholars hypothesize that presidential contestedness increases among recent presidents only because of unfinished research or within historical eras because of growing governing problems. Applying unused data from studies of scholarly assessments of presidential performance, this analysis disconfirms the recency hypothesis and confirms the era hypothesis. Presidential contestedness increases after each of the least contested presidents: George Washington, Abraham Lincoln, and Franklin D. Roosevelt. Uncontestedness is a hard act to follow.