Presidency
Spring 2000


Instructor: Paul Fabrizio, Ph.D.
Office: Old Main 140
Office Hours: M-Th 2:30 – 5
Email: fabrizip@mcmurryadm.mcm.edu
 

“At the root of all incentives to run for public office must be human ego: a desire for the approval of others, a yearning for self-expression and self assertion: love of power and attention; zeal for success, for control and contention, concern for issues and the public trust.”
 Sen. Albert Gore, Sr. Quoted in Gore: A Political Life, by Bob Zelnick, 1999, p. 211
 
 

Course Objectives: This class will focus on the institution of the Presidency. Through an examination of scholarly books, popular books, newspapers, magazines, videos, the Internet, lectures, and simulations, we will study the people and policies of the executive branch of the Federal government.
Attention will also focus on the 2000 presidential election.

Required Readings:
 Stephanopoulos, George, All Too Human: A Political Education

 Pfiffner, James P., The Modern Presidency

 Wayne, Stephen J. The Road to the White House 2000: The Politics of Presidential Elections

 A daily newspaper

Other Sources of Information:
 http://allpolitics.com (Time and CNN)

 www.c-span.org

 www.policy.com

 www.politicaljunkie.com

 National Public Radio, Morning Edition (4am-9am) and All Things Considered  (4pm-6pm) on
KACU (89.7 FM)

 Washington Post National Weekly Edition

 Congressional Quarterly Weekly Reports

 National Journal
 
Class Procedure:
1.  Book Review:
Each student will read one book about his or her favorite President or presidential election and write a seven to ten page typed book review about that book. The book must be selected by January 26th.
The review will include the following:
1.  The name of the book, the author, the publisher, the copyright date, and the number of pages.
2.  A brief biography of the author if available from the book itself
3.  A description of the book. What is it about? What story does it tell? What arguments does it make?
4.  Review the subject matter in the book. What do you think about it? Is a problem described? Do you agree that there is a problem? Can the problem be fixed?
5.  What do you think about the author’s presentation of the subject matter? Does the author have a justifiable bias?
6.  Would you recommend this book and to whom?
 
 The book reviews are due on Feb. 21st (George Washington’s birthday). This will be worth 25% of your grade. Points will be taken off for late papers.
Possible books include:
 
 Abraham Lincoln
 Lincoln by David Herbert Donald
 Abraham Lincoln by Carl Sandburg
 Teddy Roosevelt
 The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt by Edmund Morris
 FDR
 Franklin D. Roosevelt: A Rendezvous with Destiny by Frank Freidel
 Roosevelt: The Lion and the Fox by James MacGregor Burns
 Roosevelt: The Soldier of Freedom by James MacGregor Burns
No Ordinary Time: Franklin & Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II by Doris
      Kearns Goodwin
Truman
Truman by David McCullough
Eisenhower
Eisenhower: Soldier, General of the Army, President-Elect, 1890-1952 by Stephen Ambrose
Eisenhower: The President by Stephen Ambrose
JFK
1000 Days by Arthur Schlesinger
Kennedy: Profile in Power by Richard Reeves
The Kennedy Tapes: Inside the White House during the Cuban Missile Crisis edited by Ernest R.
May and Philip D. Zelikow
LBJ
Lyndon Johnson & the American Dream by Doris Kearns
Flawed Giant: Lyndon Johnson and His Times 1960-1973 by Robert Dallek
Taking Charge: The Johnson White House Tapes 1963-64 edited by Michael Beschloss
Nixon
 The Presidential Transcripts edited by The Washington Post
Nixon: The Triumph of a Politician 1962-1972 by Stephen Ambrose
Nixon: Ruin and Recovery 1973-1990 by Stephen Ambrose
Carter
The Unfinished Presidency by Douglas Brinkley
Jimmy Carter by Peter G. Bourne
Reagan
President Reagan: The Role of a Lifetime by Lou Cannon
An American Life: The Autobiography by Ronald Reagan
Dutch by Edmund Morris
Call the Briefing!: Reagan and Bush, Sam and Helen: A Decade with Presidents and the Press
           by Marlin Fitzwater
What I Saw at the Revolution by Peggy Noonan
The Power Game: How Washington Works by Hedrick Smith
Bush
Bush by Herbert Parmet
Call the Briefing!: Reagan and Bush, Sam and Helen: A Decade with Presidents and the Press
           by Marlin Fitzwater
Clinton
The Agenda by Bob Woodward
Showdown: The Battle between the Republican Congress and the Clinton White House by
     Elizabeth Drew
The System: The American Way of Politics at the Breaking Point by Haynes Johnson and David
S. Broder
The Choice by Bob Woodward
Behind the Oval Office: Getting Reelected Against all Odds by Dick Morris
Spin Cycle: How the White House and the Media Manipulate the News by Howard Kurtz

The Vice Presidency
 Crapshoot: Rolling the Dice on the Vice Presidency by Jules Witcover

Presidential Campaigns
 The Vital South: How Presidents are Elected by Earl Black and Merle Black
1948
 The Loneliest Campaign: The Truman Victory of 1948 by Irwin Ross
1960
 The Making of the President 1960 by Theodore H. White
 1964
 The Making of the President 1964 by Theodore H. White
 1968
 The Making of the President 1968 by Theodore H. White
 1972
 The Making of the President 1972 by Theodore H. White
 1976
 Marathon: The Pursuit of the Presidency 1972-1976 by Jules Witcover
 1980
 Blue Smoke and Mirrors: How Reagan Won and Why Carter Lost the Election of 1980 by Jack
     Germond and Jules Witcover
1984
 Wake Us When It’s Over: Presidential Politics of 1984 by Jack Germond and Jules Witcover
 1988
 Whose Broad Stripes and Bright Stars? The Trivial Pursuit of the Presidency 1988 by Jack
     Germond and Jules Witcover
What it Takes by Richard Ben Cramer
1992
Mad as Hell: The Revolt at the Ballot Box 1992 by Jack Germond and Jules Witcover
All’s Fair: Love, War, and Running for President by Mary Matalin and James Carville
Quest for the Presidency1992 by the writers of Newsweek
1996
The Choice by Bob Woodward
Behind the Oval Office: Getting Reelected Against all Odds by Dick Morris
 
 
 

2.  Oral Participation.
 This is a key element of the class. Students must participate constantly. Each Monday and frequently on Wednesdays, two students will talk for five minutes about the readings assigned for that week. Presentations will consist of both a written and an oral component. Students will also make presentations on other assigned topics. Frequently classes will be devoted to simulation exercises and participation is expected for those as well. Participation will account for 50% of a student’s grade. If is a student is unable to come to class when they are expected to make a presentation, please notify the instructor before class to reschedule.

3.  Final Exam
 There will be one written exam. It will be a written final that will be a take home, open book, open note test. It will be typed and will be at least seven pages long. It will answer the question what criteria should a president use when deciding to intervene in a foreign crisis. In other words start your essay by writing “If I were the President of the United States, I would…”It will account for 25% of your grade. Because this is a take home exam, there is no need for a make-up exam. It will be due on Wednesday May 3rd at 3pm in my office.

4.  Grades
 Grades will be awarded on the following scale:
  100-91 A
    90-81 B
    80-71 C
    70-61 D
    60- 0 F

5.  Class Schedule
January 10th  Introduction
January 12th  Candidates: Pfiffner, Appendix B&C (The U.S. Constitution),
Handout
January 17th  Wayne ch. 1&2; 4&5
January 19th  Nomination Campaign &the VP: Stephanopoulos ch. 1&2
January 24th  Wayne ch. 6,7,8
January 26th  General Election: Select book for book review, Stephanopoulos ch.
3&4
January 31st  Pfiffner ch. 1&3;
February 2nd  Getting Started: Stephanopoulos ch 5
February 7th  Pfiffner, ch. 4&5
February 9th  Finding the Right People: Stephanopoulos, ch. 6
February 14th, & 16th  Pfiffner, ch. 7
Feb. 21st & Feb. 23rd Foreign crisis: Stephanopoulos, ch. 7
Feb. 28th & March 1st State of the Union: Pfiffner, ch. 6; Stephanopoulos, ch. 8
March 6th & March 8th Being Presidential: Stephanopoulos, ch. 9
March 13th & Mar. 15th  Spring Break
March 20th and Mar. 22nd Scandal, Pfiffner ch. 8, Stephanopoulos, ch. 10
March 27th & Mar. 29th Press:  Stephanopoulos, ch 11&12, video
April 3rd &April 5th Decision-Making:  Stephanopoulos, ch. 12 &13, video
April 10th & April 12th Decision-Making (cont.): Stephanopoulos, ch. 15
April 17th & April 19th  Guest Speaker
April 24th   Easter Monday – no school
April 26th & May 1st Final Thoughts:  Stephanopoulos, ch. 16 & Epilogue