poli201_lec6(president)

poli201_lec6(president) - POLI 201 / Chapter 6 Professor...

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POLI 201 / Chapter 6 Professor Finocchiaro 1 CHAPTER 6 The President: From Chief Clerk to Chief Executive POLI 201: American National Government The Presidency and the Founding The Framers of the Constitution were ambivalent about executive power. 1. The colonial experience with the King of England and royally appointed governors warned Americans of the dangers of strong executives. 2. The weak executive under the Articles of Confederation highlighted the problems of governing without a potent executive. Led by Alexander Hamilton, Federalists sought to provide for a presidency that was: 1. energetic; 2. independent of Congress; 3. endowed with sufficient powers to lead.
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POLI 201 / Chapter 6 Professor Finocchiaro 2 The Collective-Action Principle: All politics is collective action. As the number and diversity of the relevant actors increase, so does the collective action problem. Federalists valued “unity” in the executive so that presidents would be decisive and could act quickly. Unity was designed to imbue the presidency with the reverse of a collective action problem. “That unity is conducive to energy will not be disputed. Decision, activity, secrecy, and dispatch will generally characterize the proceedings of one man in a much more eminent degree than the proceedings of any greater number; and in proportion as the number is increased, these qualities will be diminished.” -- Alexander Hamilton, Federalist #70 Although they sought an energetic presidency, their ambivalence toward executive power led the Framers of the Constitution to remove the president
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This note was uploaded on 02/14/2011 for the course POLI 201 taught by Professor Briggs during the Fall '08 term at South Carolina.

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poli201_lec6(president) - POLI 201 / Chapter 6 Professor...

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