Presidency by Plebiscite: The Reagan-Bush Era in Institutional Perspective
The U.S. presidency has been characterized in a variety of ways - imperial, impossible, imperiled; personal, plural, postmodern - depending on the era and who was in office. In this book, Professor Rimmerman outlines the attributes of the plebiscitary presidency, a form of the office that dates from the FDR period but that has been most fully exploited by Ronald Reagan. By contrasting the Reagan and Bush administrations, the author points up the shortcomings of a presidency that operates by plebiscite and directs us toward a new standard for electing and evaluating presidents - one that insists on a respect for institutional limitations and effective citizen participation. Participatory democracy is essential to counter the dangers of trends toward "presidency by plebiscite" such as hero worship and direct tele-electronic democracy, which were illustrated by Ross Perot's appeal to the American public during the 1992 elections.
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The Rise of the Plebiscitary Presidency
Public Politics and the Use of Values
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