Debating the Presidency: Conflicting Perspectives on the American Executive

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Richard J. Ellis, Michael Nelson
SAGE Publications, Oct 13, 2009 - Political Science - 272 pages
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The study of the presidency—the power of the office, the evolution of the executive as an institution, the men who have served—has generated a great body of research and scholarship.What better way to get students to grapple with the ideas of the literature than through conflicting perspectives on some of the most pivotal issues facing the modern presidency? Richard Ellis and Michael Nelson have once again assembled a cadre of top scholars to offer a series of pro/con essays that will inspire spirited debate beyond the pages of the book.

Each essay—written in the form of a debate resolution— offers a compelling yet concise view on the American executive. In essays that are new to this edition, contributors debate the repeal of the 22nd Amendment, the abolition of the vice presidency, the extent to which presidential signing statements threaten the separation of powers, and whether the fighting of the war on terror should require relaxing checks on presidential power. Ellis and Nelson introduce each pair of essays, giving students context and preparing them to read each argument critically, so they can decide for themselves which side of the debate they find most persuasive.

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About the author (2009)

Richard J. Ellis is the Mark O. Hatfield Professor of Politics at Willamette University. Among his recent books are Judging the Boy Scouts of America: Gay Rights, Freedom of Association, and the Dale Case; The Development of the American Presidency; Presidential Travel: The Journey from George Washington to George W. Bush; Judging Executive Power: Sixteen Supreme Court Cases that have Shaped the American Presidency, and Debating Reform: Conflicting Perspectives on How to Fix the American Political System, 2nd Ed. In 2008 he was named the Carnegie Foundation for Advancement of Teaching Oregon Professor of the Year.

Michael Nelson is the Fulmer Professor of Political Science at Rhodes College and a Senior Fellow of the Miller Center of Public Affairs at the University of Virginia. His recent books include: The American Presidency: Origins and Development, 1776–2011, 6th Ed., The Presidency and the Political System, 9th Ed., and The Evolving Presidency: Landmark Documents, 1787-2010, 4th Ed, and Debating Reform: Conflicting Perspectives on How to Fix the American Political System, 2nd Ed. More than fifty of his articles have been reprinted in anthologies of political science, history, music, and English composition, including articles on subjects as varied as baseball, C. S. Lewis, and Frank Sinatra.

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