The President's Cabinet: An Analysis in the Period from Wilson to Eisenhower

By Richard F. Fenno | Go to book overview

CHAPTER FIVE
The Cabinet and Politics: I

F ACE-TO-FACE contact between the President and his Cabinet is occasional and limited. Both parties make their greatest expenditure of time and energy in activities beyond the immediate President-Cabinet nexus. For the Chief Executive, there are the multiple tasks of leadership -- formal and informal, legal or extra-legal. For the Cabinet member, there are a host of involvements arising out of his departmental, constituency, partisan, and legislative relationships. What is the effect of these extensive extra-Cabinet activities on the President-Cabinet relationship? Do they help to account for the group behavior we have observed in the Cabinet meeting? Will the individual member's other involvements affect his position as adviser and "chief lieutenant" to the President? The answer to these questions must be sought by moving beyond the immediate President-Cabinet nexus and into the political system as a whole.

The President, it is commonly said, is "many men." He plays at least four distinguishable yet overlapping and frequently conflicting roles -- as Chief Representative of the Nation, Chief of his Party, Chief Legislator, and Chief Executive. His leadership, like all leadership, can be understood in terms of the interrelation of personal and situational phenomena. In playing his variety of roles, singly or in juxtaposition, the President will be required to demonstrate many different personal abilities, involving intelligence, skill, and temperament. He will be required, also, to function in different contexts, with regard for the limitations imposed upon him, the social constituencies to which he speaks, the degree of support he wishes to get, the goals he seeks

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The President's Cabinet: An Analysis in the Period from Wilson to Eisenhower
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Harvard Political Studies i
  • Title Page iii
  • Preface vii
  • Acknowledgments ix
  • Contents xi
  • Introduction 3
  • Chapter One The Cabinet in Perspective 9
  • Chapter Two The Appointment Process 51
  • Chapter Three - The Cabinet Meeting: 1 88
  • Chapter Four - The Cabinet Meeting: II 131
  • Chapter Five - The Cabinet and Politics: I 157
  • Chapter Six - The Cabinet and Politics: II 196
  • Chapter Seven - The Cabinet and Reform 250
  • Notes 273
  • Index 313
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