1. I agree with Richard Neustadt in that the president’s only power is the “power to persuade.” To begin with, the system of checks and balances was created to keep all the branches of government equal. With the president being apart of the executive branch, he alone does not have the power to change anything since he isn’t above anyone. Also, presidents do not have the power to come up with laws and pass them. He must persuade representatives or those of the congress of a problem that needs to be fixed through a law. He could also persuade regular people like us to see the issue and bring it to our representative who can try to get the law passed. But before the president ever gets to pass a law, it must be reviewed by the legislature and then voted in by both chambers of congress and if it passed through there, the president has the ability to sign it and pass the law. Before the president is allowed to pass the law, he must persuade all of these groups of people that there is a problem big enough for a law which is why I think his only power is persuasion.
2. The statement that the president’s only power is the “power to persuade” is not entirely true. The President can issue things like a Presidential pardon that pardon’s people from their crimes or other unconstitutional actions. That being said, most of what the President can do involves some sort of persuasion. For example, the President can appoint key members of their administration, however, the Presdient needs to convince the Senate they are fit for the job. Even agreements like executive agreements must go both ways with the two country’s involved. A president must also try to persuade Congress to pass laws they wish to pass in order to get it approved. In a Senate on the other side of the President’s party, it can be very hard for the President to get things done without using the power of persuasion to convince the Senate. Over all, while the power of to persuade does not dictate a presidents power, it is almost essential to have if a president wants to get things done in the country.
Presidential historian Richard Neustadt has said the president’s only power is the “power to persuade.” Do you agree or disagree with this statement? In your response, draw upon knowledge you gained from the reading and the lecture.