How Mandates Were Invented

The concept of a President earning a right to govern and direct the agenda on behalf of the People is, in historical terms, a new concept.   No such concept is present in Constitution, nor does it appear, was imagined by Constitutional supporters or opponents.  Instead it is the result of Andrew Jackson’s Presidency.  A President that has…

The Power to Pardon

From Warren Harding’s pardon of Socialist Eugene Debs, to the Ford Nixon Pardon, we look at the pardon power in history. From a 2017 podcast, that was originally a 2008 podcast, but with some meaning today.

The Power to Pardon

One of the President’s greatest and least checked powers is designed to overcome unfortunate guilt, legal error, or to take some action for national good.  A look at what Alexander Hamilton called “the benign prerogative,” and its history. Recorded at the time of President Bush’s last days, it makes sense again.

The (Very Few) Rejected Cabinet Choices

From Roger Taney to Charles Warren (pictured) to John Tower, the few and the not so proud perhaps.  It is rare for the choice of a President not to get their choice.  But there have been a few rejections.  And why?  Were they rejected for great reasons?  Not often.  Politics sometimes very insider and even petty lead…