THE TWENTY-FIFTH AMENDMENT: Its Complete History and Earliest Applications by John D. Feerick

THE TWENTY-FIFTH AMENDMENT: Its Complete History and Earliest Applications

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A book in tribute to the 25th Amendment, which Feerick helped draft, and its success in filling constitutional gaps on presidential succession, vice-presidential vacancy, and deliberations about presidential incapacity. Feerick begins with a summary of his 1965 history of succession crises in US history, From Failing Hands. The rest of the book is essentially devoted to praise of the smoothness of the Gerald Ford and Nelson Rockefeller nominations, and to examination of the drawbacks of alternatives to the 25th Amendment, especially the idea of special direct elections. Feerick is certainly accurate in stressing the smoothness of recent appointments, but whether this reflects the intrinsic virtues of the amendment is another question. Likewise, the book points to genuine practical problems involved in direct elections, but remains unconvincing when it argues that the rule of fidelity to past elections is more ""democratic"" than holding new ones. A unique and useful reference which, however, remains too parti pris to make the tangle of constitutional issues and party maneuvers really come alive.

Pub Date: July 5th, 1976
Publisher: Fordham Univ. Press