THE ENLARGEMENT OF THE PRESIDENCY by Rexford G. Tugwell

THE ENLARGEMENT OF THE PRESIDENCY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Professor Tugwell contends that the Presidency has grown nearly to the point where expansion under present forms is possible. Since the Presidency ""is clearly designed to grow bigger"", something more than a mere enlargement of the White House staff must be considered. He suggests a plural executive like the cabinets and councils that govern most other countries. But by far the major portion of this scholarly, sometimes partisan and somewhat overlong, work analyzes the performance of past presidents. Not surprisingly, Tugwell finds among his strong presidents such chief executives as Washington, Jefferson, Jackson, Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, and most of all Wilson and FDR who ""burst the bonds"" as none of his predecessors had been able to do. Tugwell maintains strong presidents use the ""Doctrine of Necessity"" to provide authority for their moves where none existed. ""Weak"" presidents abounded on the Whig-Republican side, among them Grant, Taft, Harding, Coolidge and Hoover-and Eisenhower rates on his scale with Grant. Eisenhower has enjoyed the luxuries of the office, while serving as a ""caretaker"". And Truman is not placed in the ""second flight"" of strong presidents and along with Eisenhower does not have the ""remotest chance of being listed as among the more competent""..... Although the book is hardly light reading, it does contain some interesting sidelights on the White House itself (who put in the first bathtub, etc.) and such observations as Tugwell's conclusion that few ""First Ladies"" have been capable of meeting the demands placed upon them.

Pub Date: Sept. 23rd, 1960
Publisher: Doubleday