Founding the American Presidency

Front Cover
Richard J. Ellis
Rowman & Littlefield, 1999 - History - 313 pages
At a time when the institution of the presidency seems in a state of almost permanent crisis, it is particularly important to understand what sort of an institution the framers of the Constitution thought they were creating. Founding the American Presidency offers a first-hand view of the minds of the founders by bringing together extensive selections from the constitutional convention in Philadelphia as well as representative selections from the subsequent debates over ratification. Organized topically, the book focuses on those issues of executive power that most deeply concerned and often sharply divided the founders, including the electoral college and impeachment, the presidential term and reeligibility, the veto power and war powers, the power of appointment and the power of pardon. EllisO judicious selections mean that teachers and students no longer need to settle for the meager rations of a Federalist paper or two supplemented by a quick summary of the founders' thoughts before being fast-forwarded to the contemporary presidency. Pointed discussion questions provoke students to consider new perspectives on the presidency. Ideal for all courses on the presidency, the book is also important for all citizens who want to understand not only the past but the future of the American presidency.
 

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Contents

Prelude to the Presidency
1
One President or Many?
31
An Executive Council?
44
The Long and Tortuous Debate
63
Term of Office and Reeligibility
97
The Electoral College
110
To Veto or Not to Veto
129
War and Peace
154
Impeachment
233
Too Weak
265
Chronology
280
Delegates to the Constitutional Convention
281
Convention Reports and Resolutions
282
The Constitution of 1787
285
Amendments to the Constitution
288
References
292

The Power of Appointment
181
Pardon Power
219
Index
299
About the Editor 313

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About the author (1999)

Richard J. Ellis is the Mark O. Hatfield Chair in Politics at Willamette University.

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