#APSA2015 Cambria Press Booth (705) at 10 a.m. on Friday: Meet Thomas Cronin, Michael Genovese, and the authors behind The Quest for Leadership
Meet Thomas E. Cronin, Michael Genovese, and the authors behind The Quest for Leadership today at 10 a.m. at the Cambria Press booth (705) in the #APSA2015 book exhibit hall. You might be one of the lucky ones to get a complimentary, signed copy of this brand-new publication!
The book launch for The Quest for Leadership took place last night at the APSA Presidential and Executive Politics (PEP) reception. Authored by some of the nation’s top scholars and led by distinguished political scientist Michael A. Genovese, this publication honors eminent political scientist Thomas E. Cronin for his significant contributions to the fields of political science and leadership.
Chapter 1: Hitting the Ground Running Twice (Meenekshi Bose)
“The three case studies presented here illustrate some instructive parallels between the two presidencies. Both Bush and Obama succeeded in enacting one of their top policy priorities—education and health-care reform, respectively—early in their first terms by setting clear goals and negotiating with Congress to pass legislation. Bush engaged in bipartisan negotiations while Obama pursued intra-party negotiations, but both presidents were willing to make compromises to achieve results. In their second terms, though, both presidents did not have similar success with their policy agendas of Social Security reform for Bush and immigration reform for Obama. Why were they unable to hit the ground running again?”
Chapter 2: Leadership and the Tending of Coalitions (Bruce Miroff)
“Paying attention to the tending of coalitions is essential if one wishes to understand what shapes presidential purposes and drives presidential actions. Presidents pursuing strongly felt policy preferences are likely to temper their own aspirations with recognition of the need to incorporate the preferences of their most essential supporters. For cases in which presidents’ policy preferences are more prudential than personal, the preferences of coalition members are likely to assume an even greater role in executive choices. For the presidency, facing as it does such a wide-ranging array of policy concerns, the latter situation may well be more common than the former.”
Chapter 3: President as War-Time Leader (David Gray Adler)
“The trajectory of thought among modern presidents on the question of legal and constitutional limits on executive power, in either initiating war or conducting it, is a flat line. For more than a half century, presidents of both parties—Republicans and Democrats, conservatives and liberals alike—have assumed the authority to initiate and direct war is exclusively executive in nature. That position, now firmly ingrained in presidential remarks at press conferences, in cabinet members’ testimony before congressional committees and in the opinions of the Office of Legal Counsel, has no footing in the text of the Constitution, the discussions and debates in the Constitutional Convention and the various state ratifying conventions, the Federalist Papers and other contemporaneous documents that accompanied the drafting and signing of the Constitution. Nor does the argument find any traction in opinions delivered by the US Supreme Court. We have reached a point in American history where presidents and their lawyers pay little or no heed to constitutional principles that, 200 years ago, sought to prevent presidential war-making. Indeed, the practice of war making in the United States today bears no resemblance to the Constitution.
Chapter 4: Reflections on the State of Presidential Leadership and Authority (Victoria A. Farrar-Myers)
“If norms, or shared understandings of expected behavior, continue to demand the exercise of presidential leadership after Obama leaves office, regardless of who holds the office of president, then the primary source of leadership within the American political system will remain entrenched in the White House. But if the understandings of expected presidential behavior cease to be shared widely, then the federal government may appear rudderless, both domestically and internationally, in the absence of Congress picking up the mantle of leadership; a situation with which we are all too familiar.
Chapter 5: Mistaking the Moment and Misperceiving the Opportunity (Lara M. Brown)
“Neustadt argued that “Congress, institutionally, is suspicious” of the White House and that members compete “for control of the federal agencies, their programs, and their budgets.” Noting that the “courteous manners and procedural accommodations” are only temporary, he implied that the legislative alliances formed in those first heady months are more fragile than they appear because of these politicians’ differing constituencies and electoral demands. As such, presidents expecting enduring loyalty from fellow partisans in Congress, according to Neustadt’s observations, are likely to be disappointed. Beyond all of these issues, partisan polarization marks every aspect of today’s politics. From an electorate less likely to look past party labels and cast split tickets to the vastly different presidential approval ratings that vary by party affiliation to the nontrivial levels of fear and loathing of opposition partisans that are measured in surveys, American politics have become more than a team sport. Each day seems to be a rivalry grudge match. Not unlike the iconic Hatfield and McCoy feud, distrust and suspicion are pervasive between the parties. Negotiations are fraught with irrational, spiteful, and petty behaviors. Rhetoric and optics now seem to trump accomplishments. In sum, doing matters less than posturing. Posturing for what? Why the next election, of course.”
Chapter 6: Presidents Bush and Obama and the Surveillance of Americans (James P. Pfiffner)
“Since the atrocities of 9/11, the US intelligence community has vastly expanded in size and scope; and with the growth of the internet, the technological capacity of the US government to collect information and communications of US citizens has increased exponentially. President George W. Bush initially authorized surveillance of Americans without the warrants required in law, based on his claimed inherent Article II powers. Congress later included some of these surveillance programs in law. President Obama, before he came to office, expressed some criticism about the Bush programs and wanted to place limits on government surveillance of Americans. But once he was in office, he embraced existing surveillance programs as necessary to protect US national security. When the extent of some of these programs was unveiled by Edward Snowden in the summer of 2013, people concerned with civil liberties expressed alarm at the scope of these programs.”
Chapter 7: Leading the Public/ Following the Public (Todd L. Belt)
“The president is the most visible politician in the US, and much has been made of his ability to influence public opinion. From advocating for certain policies, to leading the country to war, to consoling the nation during times of crises, the president is the nation’s foremost political communicator. But he can only lead the nation so far, and sometimes his efforts have been resisted by the public at large. For example, in 2006, George W. Bush suffered defeats in advocating for Social Security and Immigration reform; and in 2013, Barack Obama was forced to backpedal from his advocacy of an intervention in the Syrian civil war. These failures in public leadership come against the backdrop of a changing communication environment as well as a changing political climate. Does the emergence of online communication help or hinder the president’s attempts at public leadership? Does this new technology force the president to respond to follow public opinion rather than to lead it? What role does increased political polarization have on the president’s ability to lead the public?”
Chapter 8: America’s World Leadership (David C. Hendrickson)
“The strategy of revolutionary overthrow—as recently witnessed in Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Ukraine—is just one of the things wrong with American foreign policy, and retrenchment on that score would by no means solve all of America’s problems. But it is a start. Reflection on the purposes of American power has to begin with the choice between contrary precedents, of which the most dramatic is that between Richard Nixon in 1973 and George Bush in 2005. All questions of leadership are ultimately dependent on the worthiness of the ends that leaders seek: if the goal is misconceived, then no marshalling of allies or subtle changes in means will salvage it. Americans should appreciate their heritage of world leadership, but they should also query it. In past epochs, American leaders entertained a more modest conception of the nation’s role. They held fast to a vision of world order that has been practically abandoned in recent years. To move forward in the future, Americans need to claw their way back to the past in search of useful precedents to guide them.”
Chapter 9: Leadership in the Judicial Context (Christopher Shortell)
“Leadership is often studied through the lens of executive and legislative contexts. The judiciary has not received the same attention, which is unfortunate because understanding leadership in the judiciary requires more than simply applying existing leadership studies to judges. Studying judicial leadership requires paying careful attention to the particular institutional contexts within which judges work. The constraints and opportunities are distinct in important ways from those faced by executives and legislatures. This is not to say that leadership is unimportant in the judicial context or that existing studies of leadership do not recognize the importance of institutional constraints. Rather, it is to argue that understanding judicial leadership requires scholars to pay careful attention to when and how that leadership can emerge and operate in its particular context.”
Chapter 11: I Am an American Day (David Schmitz)
“With war on the horizon, the change of focus from citizenship to wartime mobilization and the proper role of the United States in the war were reflected in the I Am an American Day events held throughout the nation. They became more about the contrast between the United States and the fascist nations, about what was necessary to protect American freedom and liberty now and in the future, than civics lessons and ceremonies on naturalization and good citizenship. Simultaneously, the crowds soared as millions of people participated across the nation.”
This book is part of the Politics, Institutions, and Public Policy in America (PIPPA) book series (Editors: Scott Frisch and Sean Kelly). See more well-reviewed books in the Cambria Press PIPPA Series.
About the editor: Michael A. Genovese holds the Loyola Chair of Leadership Studies, and he is Professor of Political Science, Director of the Institute for
Leadership Studies, and acting President of the World Policy Institute at
Loyola Marymount University.
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