Debating the Obama Presidency

  • Filename: debating-the-obama-presidency.
  • ISBN: 9781442261259
  • Release Date: 2016-09-22
  • Number of pages: 286
  • Author: Steven E. Schier
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield



This is the first book to present both the arguments for and against Barack Obama’s presidency and its policies. In it, prominent political scientists and Washington think tank scholars address Obama’s domestic, economic and foreign policies and his political legacy. Contrasting perspectives assess the consequences of the large aspirations of the Obama presidency and the political and policy challenges Obama encountered in the pursuit of those aspirations. Barack Obama’s project in the White House involved installing lasting changes in national policy and politics. Institutionally, the Obama administration sought to preserve control of Congress through maintenance of reliable partisan Democratic majorities, and enhance influence over the federal courts through a steady stream of liberal judicial appointees. The administration sought increased autonomy over the executive branch by a reorganizations spawned by a national economic crisis and an ambitious domestic policy agenda. Politically, the Obama administration sought the entrenchment of consistent Democratic electoral majorities. Such large ambitions have generated enduring controversies surrounding his presidency, controversies that receive a full airing and debate in this volume. Contributions by Alan I. Abramowitz, Emory University; Andrew E. Busch, Claremont McKenna College; Peter Juul, Center for American Progress; Lawrence Korb, Center for American Progress; William G. Mayer, Northeastern University; Ruth O’Brien, City University of New York Graduate Center; John J. Pitney Jr.. Claremont McKenna College; Danielle Pletka, American Enterprise Institute; Daniel E. Ponder, Drury University; Steven E. Schier, Carleton College; Raymond Tatalovich, Loyola University Chicago; and John Kenneth White, Catholic University of America.

Debating the Presidency

  • Filename: debating-the-presidency.
  • ISBN: 9781483307749
  • Release Date: 2014-02-06
  • Number of pages: 288
  • Author: Richard J. Ellis
  • Publisher: CQ Press



The study of the presidency—the power of the office, the evolution of the institution, the men who have served—has generated a rich body of research and scholarship. What better way to get students to grapple with this literature than through conflicting perspectives on some of the most pivotal issues facing the modern presidency? Once again Ellis and Nelson have assembled a cadre of top scholars to offer pro/con essays that will inspire spirited debate beyond the pages of the book in the Third edition of Debating the Presidency. Based on reviewers’ suggestions the authors have added new debate topics that include the presidential power to persuade, an up/down vote by Congress on legislation proposed by the president, presidential czars, the unitary executive, and the president’s war powers. Ellis and Nelson introduce each pair of essays, providing context and preparing students to read each argument critically, so they can decide for themselves which side of the debate they find most persuasive.

The Obama Presidency in the Constitutional Order

  • Filename: the-obama-presidency-in-the-constitutional-order.
  • ISBN: 9781442205321
  • Release Date: 2011-03-18
  • Number of pages: 326
  • Author: Carol McNamara
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers



The Obama administration is shaping up to be one of the most consequential in recent American history. In this book, a diverse group of presidential scholars step back from the partisan debate to consider the first two years of the Obama presidency through the lens of the U.S. constitution's theory, structure, and powers. They ask how Barack Obama understands and exercises the President's formal constitutional and informal powers and responsibilities of the president, from foreign policy and public policy to his political leadership of the Democratic party and the nation as a whole. This timely first look at the Obama presidency establishes a constitutional yardstick of interest to scholars of the presidency, constitutional thought, and American political thought.

Tension City

  • Filename: tension-city.
  • ISBN: 9780812981438
  • Release Date: 2012-09-25
  • Number of pages: 209
  • Author: Jim Lehrer
  • Publisher: Random House Incorporated



The executive editor and anchor of PBS's NewsHour presents a lively analysis of political debates from the last two decades through the preparations, executions and mistakes of recent moderators and participants, offering insight into specific high-profile events and decisions.

The Obama Presidency and the Politics of Change

  • Filename: the-obama-presidency-and-the-politics-of-change.
  • ISBN: 3319410326
  • Release Date: 2016-11-23
  • Number of pages: 330
  • Author: Edward Ashbee
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan



This edited volume considers the extent to which the Obama presidency matched the promises of hope and change that were held out in the 2008 election. Contributors assess the character of “change” and, within this context, survey the extent to which there was enduring change within particular policy areas, both domestic and foreign. The authors combine empirical detail with more speculative assessment of the limits and possibilities of change amidst a very dense institutional landscape and in an era of intense political polarization. Some see significant changes, the full consequences of which may only be evident in later years. Other authors in the collection present a markedly different picture and suggest that processes of change were not only limited and partial but at times leading the US in directions far removed from the promises of 2008. The book will make an important contribution to the debates about the Obama legacy.

Kill or Capture

  • Filename: kill-or-capture.
  • ISBN: 9780547547787
  • Release Date: 2012-06-05
  • Number of pages: 304
  • Author: Daniel Klaidman
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt



Is Barack Obama an idealist or a ruthless pragmatist? He vowed to close Guantánamo, put an end to coercive interrogation and military tribunals, and restore American principles of justice, yet in his first term he has backtracked on each of these promises, ramping up the secret war of drone strikes and covert operations. Behind the scenes, wrenching debates between hawks and doves—those who would kill versus those who would capture—have repeatedly tested the very core of the president’s identity. Top investigative reporter Dan Klaidman has spoken to dozens of sources to piece together a riveting Washington story packed with revelations. As the president’s inner circle debated secret programs, new legal frontiers, and the disjuncture between principles and down-and-dirty politics, Obama vacillated, sometimes lashed out, and spoke in lofty tones while approving a mounting toll of assassinations and kinetic-war operations. Klaidman’s fly-on-the-wall reporting reveals who has his ear, how key national security decisions are really made, and whether or not President Obama has lived up to the promise of candidate Obama. Readers making up their minds about him during the 2012 election year will turn to Kill or Capture to decide.

The Black Presidency

  • Filename: the-black-presidency.
  • ISBN: 054438766X
  • Release Date: 2016-02-02
  • Number of pages: 336
  • Author: Michael Eric Dyson
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin



A provocative, lively deep-dive into the meaning of America's first black president and first black presidency, from "one of the most graceful and lucid intellectuals writing on race and politics today" (Vanity Fair)

Power Wars

  • Filename: power-wars.
  • ISBN: 9780316286602
  • Release Date: 2015-11-03
  • Number of pages: 688
  • Author: Charlie Savage
  • Publisher: Little, Brown



Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Charlie Savage's penetrating investigation of the Obama presidency and the national security state Barack Obama campaigned on a promise of change from George W. Bush's "global war on terror." Yet from indefinite detention and drone strikes to surveillance and military tribunals, Obama ended up continuing-and in some cases expanding-many policies he inherited. What happened? In Power Wars, Charlie Savage looks inside the Obama administration's national security legal and policy team in a way that no one has before. Based on exclusive interviews with more than 150 current and former officials and access to previously unreported documents, he lays bare their internal deliberations, including emotional debates over the fates of detainees held on torture-tainted evidence and acts of war that lacked congressional authorization. He tells the inside stories of how Obama came to order the killing of an American citizen, preside over an unprecedented crackdown on leaks, and keep a then-secret National Security Agency program that collected records of every American's phone calls. Savage also pieces together the first comprehensive history of how American surveillance secretly developed over the past thirty-five years, synthesizing recent revelations and filling in gaps with new reporting. And he provides lucid explanations of legal dilemmas in a way that non-lawyers can understand. Highlighted by new information about the pivotal aftermath to the failed Christmas underwear bombing and the planning for the Osama bin Laden raid, Savage's own eyewitness reporting at Guantánamo, and detailed accounts of closed-door meetings at the highest levels of government, Power Wars equips readers to understand the legacy of Obama's presidency.

The Obama Presidency

  • Filename: the-obama-presidency.
  • ISBN: 9781483301624
  • Release Date: 2011-07-26
  • Number of pages: 368
  • Author: Bert A. Rockman
  • Publisher: CQ Press



In the latest volume in this classic series, Rockman, Rudalevige, and Campbell once again bring together top-notch scholars, this time to take a comprehensive look at the first two years of Barack Obama’s presidency. Assessing Obama’s political strategy, as well as his administration’s successes and setbacks, chapter authors critically examine a presidency marked by continued partisanship, major policy battles, and continued global turmoil.

The Obama Nation

  • Filename: the-obama-nation.
  • ISBN: 1416598103
  • Release Date: 2008-08-05
  • Number of pages: 384
  • Author: Jerome R. Corsi
  • Publisher: Simon and Schuster



In this thoroughly researched and documented book, the #1 New York Times bestselling co-author of Unfit for Command: Swift Boat Veterans Speak Out Against John Kerry explains why the extreme leftism of an Obama presidency would leave the United States weakened, diminished and divided, why Obama must be defeated -- and how he can be. Barack Obama stepped onto the national political stage when the then-Illinois State senator addressed the 2004 Democratic National Convention. Soon after Obama was elected to the U.S. Senate, author Jerome Corsi began researching Obama's personal and political background. Scrupulously sourced with more than 600 footnotes, The Obama Nation is the result of that research. By tracing Obama's career and influences from his early years in Hawaii and Indonesia, the beginnings of his political career in Chicago, his voting record in the Illinois legislature, his religious training and his adoption of Christianity through to his recent involvement in Kenyan politics, his political advisors and fundraising associates and his meteoric campaign for president, Jerome Corsi shows that an Obama presidency would, in his words, be "a repeat of the failed extremist politics that have characterized and plagued Democratic Party politics since the late 1960s." In this stunning and comprehensive new book, the reader will learn about: Obama's extensive connections with Islam and radical politics, from his father and step-father's Islamic backgrounds, to his Communist and socialist mentors in Hawaii and Chicago, to his long-term and close associations with former Weather Underground heroes William Ayers and Bernadette Dohrn -- associations much closer than heretofore revealed by the press. Barack and Michelle's 20-year-long religious affiliation with the black-liberation theology of former Trinity United Church of Christ Reverend Jeremiah Wright, whose sermons have always been steeped in a rage first expressed by Franz Fanon , Stokely Carmichael and Malcolm X, a rage that Corsi shows has deep meaning for Obama. Obama's continuing connections with Kenya, the homeland of his father, through his support for the candidacy of Raila Odinga, the radical socialist presidential contender who came to power amid Islamist violence and church burnings. Obama's involvement in the slum-landlord empire of the Chicago political fixer Tony Rezko, who helped to bankroll Obama's initial campaigns and to purchase of Barack and Michelle's dream-home property. The background and techniques of the Obama campaign's cult of personality, including the derivation of the words "hope" and change." Obama's far-left domestic policy, his controversial votes on abortion, his history of opposition to the Second Amendment, his determination to raise capital-gains taxes, his impractical plan to achieve universal health care, and his radical plan to tax Americans to fund a global-poverty-reduction program. Obama's naïve, anti-war, anti-nuclear foreign-policy, predicated on the reduction of the military, the eradication of nuclear weapons and an overconfidence in the power of his personality, as if belief in change alone could somehow transform international politics, achieve nuclear-weapons disarmament and withdrawal from Iraq without adverse consequences, for us, for the Iraqis or for Israel. Meticulously researched and documented, The Obama Nation is the definitive source for information on why and how Barack Obama must be defeated -- not by invective and general attacks, but by detailed arguments that are well-researched and fact-based.

The Obama Presidency

  • Filename: the-obama-presidency.
  • ISBN: 9780739172353
  • Release Date: 2012-05-10
  • Number of pages: 242
  • Author: William Crotty
  • Publisher: Lexington Books



In this illuminating examination of the Obama presidency, the contributors describe the policy directions followed, and the administration’s level of success in achieving its objectives. Throughout the Obama administration, efforts were intended to alleviate the worst of the economic stress facing the nation, move the president closer to the center of the American political spectrum, and prepare for the upcoming reelection campaign, to be fought primarily on the same issues as the earlier one. The contributors present an analysis of the motivations and political thinking underlying the administration’s action along with assessments of the policy consequences of the issue agenda favored and the public’s reaction. The Obama Presidency is an in-depth account of one of the most intriguing and important presidencies at a time of economic crisis that goes a long way in explaining the policy decisions made and their political consequences, as well as the choices facing a nation in transition.

Believer

  • Filename: believer.
  • ISBN: 9780698145665
  • Release Date: 2015-02-10
  • Number of pages: 528
  • Author: David Axelrod
  • Publisher: Penguin



New York Times Book Review “A stout defense--indeed, the best I have read--of the Obama years." A New York Times Bestseller David Axelrod has always been a believer. Whether as a young journalist investigating city corruption, a campaign consultant guiding underdog candidates against entrenched orthodoxy, or as senior adviser to the president during one of the worst crises in American history, Axelrod held fast to his faith in the power of stories to unite diverse communities and ignite transformative political change. Now this legendary strategist, the mastermind behind Barack Obama’s historic election campaigns, shares a wealth of stories from his forty-year journey through the inner workings of American democracy. Believer is the tale of a political life well lived, of a man who never gave up on the deepest promises our country has to offer. Believer reveals the roots of Axelrod’s devotion to politics and his faith in democratic change. As a child of the ’60s in New York City, Axelrod worked his first campaigns during a tumultuous decade that began with soaring optimism and ended in violence and chaos. As a young newspaperman in Chicago during the 1970s and ’80s, Axelrod witnessed another world transformed when he reported on the dissolution of the last of the big city political machines—Richard Daley, Dan Rostenkowski, and Harold Washington—along with the emergence of a dynamic black independent movement that ultimately made Obama’s ascent possible. After cutting his teeth in the rollicking world of Chicago journalism, Axelrod switched careers to become a political strategist. His unorthodox tactics during his first campaign helped him get Paul Simon unexpectedly elected to the Senate, and soon Axelrod’s counsel was sought by the greatest lights of the Democratic Party. Working for path breakers like Hillary Clinton, Deval Patrick, and Rahm Emanuel—and morally conflicted characters like Rod Blagojevich and John Edwards—Axelrod, for better and worse, redefined the techniques by which modern political campaigns are run. The heart of Believer is Axelrod’s twenty-year friendship with Barack Obama, a warm partnership that inspired both men even as it propelled each to great heights. Taking a chance on an unlikely candidate for the U.S. Senate, Axelrod ultimately collaborated closely with Obama on his political campaigns, and served as the invaluable strategist who contributed to the tremendous victories of 2008 and 2012. Switching careers again, Axelrod served as senior adviser to the president during one of the most challenging periods in national history: working at Obama’s side as he battled an economic disaster; navigated America through two wars; and fought to reform health care, the financial sector, and our gridlocked political institutions. In Believer, Axelrod offers a deeper and richer profile of this extraordinary figure—who in just four years vaulted from the Illinois State Senate to the Oval Office—from the perspective of one who was at his side every step of the way. Spanning forty years that include corruption and transformation, turmoil and progress, Believer takes readers behind the closed doors of politics even as it offers a thrilling call to democratic action. Axelrod’s Believer is a powerful and inspiring memoir enlivened by the charm and candor of one of the greatest political strategists in recent American history. DORIS KEARNS GOODWIN, author of The Bully Pulpit and Team of Rivals “Beautifully written with warmth, humor, and remarkable self-awareness, Believer is one of the finest political memoirs I have ever read.” From the Hardcover edition.

Paint the White House Black

  • Filename: paint-the-white-house-black.
  • ISBN: 9780804785570
  • Release Date: 2013-02-13
  • Number of pages: 224
  • Author: Michael P. Jeffries
  • Publisher: Stanford University Press



Barack Obama's election as the first black president in American history forced a reconsideration of racial reality and possibility. It also incited an outpouring of discussion and analysis of Obama's personal and political exploits. Paint the White House Black fills a significant void in Obama-themed debate, shifting the emphasis from the details of Obama's political career to an understanding of how race works in America. In this groundbreaking book, race, rather than Obama, is the central focus. Michael P. Jeffries approaches Obama's election and administration as common cultural ground for thinking about race. He uncovers contemporary stereotypes and anxieties by examining historically rooted conceptions of race and nationhood, discourses of "biracialism" and Obama's mixed heritage, the purported emergence of a "post-racial society," and popular symbols of Michelle Obama as a modern black woman. In so doing, Jeffries casts new light on how we think about race and enables us to see how race, in turn, operates within our daily lives. Race is a difficult concept to grasp, with outbursts and silences that disguise its relationships with a host of other phenomena. Using Barack Obama as its point of departure, Paint the White House Black boldly aims to understand race by tracing the web of interactions that bind it to other social and historical forces.

The Imperial Presidency

  • Filename: the-imperial-presidency.
  • ISBN: 0618420010
  • Release Date: 2004
  • Number of pages: 589
  • Author: Arthur Meier Schlesinger
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt



The presidential historian charts the progression of American power from George Washington to George W. Bush, revealing the exercise of power through the office as it has developed into an "imperial" seat of authority, in an updated edition of the classic history. Reprint.

Inside the Presidential Debates

  • Filename: inside-the-presidential-debates.
  • ISBN: 9780226530390
  • Release Date: 2008-09-15
  • Number of pages: 240
  • Author: Newton N. Minow
  • Publisher: University of Chicago Press



Newton Minow’s long engagement with the world of television began nearly fifty years ago when President Kennedy appointed him chairman of the Federal Communications Commission. As its head, Minow would famously dub TV a “vast wasteland,” thus inaugurating a career dedicated to reforming television to better serve the public interest. Since then, he has been chairman of PBS and on the board of CBS and elsewhere, but his most lasting contribution remains his leadership on televised presidential debates. He was assistant counsel to Illinois governor Adlai Stevenson when Stevenson first proposed the idea of the debates in 1960; he served as cochair of the presidential debates in 1976 and 1980; and he helped create and is currently vice chairman of the Commission on Presidential Debates, which has organized the debates for the last two decades. Written with longtime collaborator Craig LaMay, this fascinating history offers readers for the first time a genuinely inside look into the origins of the presidential debates and the many battles—both legal and personal—that have determined who has been allowed to debate and under what circumstances. The authors do not dismiss the criticism of the presidential debates in recent years but do come down solidly in favor of them, arguing that they are one of the great accomplishments of modern American electoral politics. As they remind us, the debates were once unique in the democratic world, are now emulated across the globe, and they offer the public the only real chance to see the candidates speak in direct response to one another in a discussion of major social, economic, and foreign policy issues. Looking to the challenges posed by third-party candidates and the emergence of new media such as YouTube, Minow and LaMay ultimately make recommendations for the future, calling for the debates to become less formal, with candidates allowed to question each other and citizens allowed to question candidates directly. They also explore the many ways in which the Internet might serve to broaden the debates’ appeal and informative power. Whether it’s Clinton or Obama vs. McCain, Inside the Presidential Debates will be welcomed in 2008 by anyone interested in where this crucial part of our democracy is headed—and how it got there.

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