Unformatted text preview: Political Science 104 Introduction to American Government Lecture October 1, 2007 Bush Veto Vetoes expansion of S-CHIP (program to provide health insurance to children in families with too much income to qualify for Medicaid) Position: program has been extended far beyond original purpose, to families making up to $62,000- $83000 (though that figure is disputed) -Funded through increase in federal cigarette tax -$35 billion increase over 5 years Initial vote -House 265-159 (short of 2/3 needed to override) -The number 265 exceeds the number of democrats. Some republicans support it. -Senate 67-29 2/3 vote Examples Can the president refuse to carry out a law he views as unconstitutional? -Is Constitution one of the laws the president must "faithfully execute?" -Generally agreed there is no "nullification (to declare void)" power -What if president refused to allow prosecutions under a criminal law, or pardons everyone convicted of violation? o Jefferson did this with people jailed under the Sedition law Can the president violate a law he views as unconstitutional (FISA and electronic surveillance Evolution of Presidential Role Different eras of presidential leadership: Legislative era (to 1933). Era of Congressional dominance - New Deal era (post 1933) Demarcation (to determine boundaries) is the strength of the presidency, which grew substantially with FDR and the New Deal Public expectations of strong action, comprehensive agenda, public leadership th 19 century: President as "clerk" Caretaker v. Steward WH Taft: the president may only do what the constitution explicitly authorizes. T.Roosevelt (and successors): whatever the constitution does not prohibit, the president may do--the Steward view. ALL presidents have incentive to push this envelope Key factors in Rise of Presidency Expansion of government power (don't need strong president when government doesn't do much) - 1880
- 1933 Public side of presidency: the "bully pulpit" Creation of "institutional presidency" - White House Staff Growth of Presidential Power FDR/New Deal changes everything Growth of Presidential Power Rise of Institutional Presidency Growth of Presidential Power Rise of Institutional Presidency Growth Historical pattern of increasing presidential power Is there a `ratchet effect'? - Military and foreign policy shift? Bush Strong view of presidential power (dangerous, opponents argue) Elements Unilateral policies Control of information Observations about GWB Most polarizing president in the modern era September 2007: Bush popularity at 29% Republicans: 73% approve Democrats: 6% approve Consistent with prior polls, which often shows 70+ gap November 2004: strongest levels of party-line voting for president ever What accounts for this? Policy component - Iraq Institutional component -Expansion of presidential power Ideological component - "using strong government in pursuit of conservative goals" Political component - 2000 election Presidential Popularity Viewed as critical resource, although it doesn't really make all that much difference Key factors: economy - "rally effect"- when bad things happen to a country, presidential popularity will potentially spike - War- bad for presidential popularity. What Difference Does Popularity Make? Conditions the reactions of other political actors presidential unpopularity lowers cost of resisting presidential action Not determinative Public Relations Strategies President's attempt to shape public debate Do they work? ...
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- Spring '05
- Government, President of the United States, Presidential Power Rise