presidential history

  • Dirty Politics, Then and Now

    by George Herring

    Political mudslinging by presidential surrogates is nothing new. But Trump digs in personally to his social media smears in a way that is unprecedented and degrading to the office and the nation.

  • How Do We Fix the American Presidency?

    Kevin Kruse and Julian Zelizer, along with political scientists William Howell and Terry M. Moe, offer context for growing concerns about the power of the Presidency. 

  • John Adams Knew When to Go Home

    by R.B. Bernstein

    One thing that John Adams never did was to voice a word of regret about leaving the presidency at his term’s end. None of his successors has ever violated or dishonored the precedent he established. And, if we are fortunate, none ever will.

  • Can Biden Win the Presidency from His Basement?

    by Quentin Janel

    Joe Biden's efforts to run an effective campaign under COVID lockdown echo the innovations forced on James Garfield. If Biden succeeds, the "Basement Campaign" may prove as influential as the "Front Porch Campaign" of 1880.

  • A History of Presidential Lies (video)

    Author Eric Alterman discusses the history of presidential lying and connects the increased power of the executive to the tendency to propount "alternative facts." 

  • The Paradox of Executive Underreach

    by Michael A. Genovese

    While the Constitution says more about limiting the overreach of the executive branch, functioning government must beware of an underreaching executive that abdicates responsibility. 

  • The Measures of a Successful Vice-Presidential Pick

    by Michael Beschloss

    Now that Joe Biden has announced Senator Kamala Harris will be his running mate, readers can decide how well the pick meets Michael Beschloss's criteria for a beneficial choice. 

  • History’s Lessons For Joe Biden

    The anniversary of the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki and the circumstances of Roosevelt's failing health should be reminders of the significance of Joe Biden's choice, even beyond the campaign.