The Impossible Presidency
The Rise and Fall of America's Highest OfficeBook - 2017
Why have recent presidents failed to create the change they promised? Should we blame the individual men, all flawed in their own ways? Or are there fundamental reasons why modern presidents fail to deliver, time and time again? In The Impossible Presidency, historian Jeremi Suri charts the long rise and quick fall of the world's most important job, from the 1790s to the present day. As he shows, early presidents greatly expanded the power of the office beyond the limited role envisioned by the founders. Suri argues that the immense accomplishments of Washington, Jackson, Lincoln and FDR left their successors with outsized and unrealistic expectations. John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson and Ronald Reagan lost control of their agendas as they were buffeted by the onrush of events and threats their predecessors never had to face. Clinton and Obama were propelled to the presidency by their personal stories but hamstrung by prurient, partisan, and prejudiced criticisms of their leadership. Contemporary presidents must react to a truly globalized world and a rapid twenty-four-our news cycle. There is little room left for bold, strategic thinking. Suri traces our disenchantment with recent presidents to the current mismatch between presidential promises and the limitations of the office.
Publisher: New York : Basic Books, 
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2017
Characteristics: xxiii, 343 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Alternative Title: Rise and fall of America's highest office