In the news
1. Huckabee surges in Iowa
2. David Brooks – the “real
3. “Bunker Hillary” – Clinton
and the media.
4. Campaigning and
Presidential Staff and Presidential Style
Evolution of the President’s staff
Burke – the “institutionalized presidency” is a
relatively recent development. Presidents in
the 19th century had almost no staff. Now it
costs about $150 million a year to staff the
Brownlow Committee set up by FDR to
recommend changes. Concluded “the
president needs help.” Two-pronged approach:
institutional and personal assistance.
Institutional includes the OMB, CEA, NSC, Trade
Rep, Office of Policy Development, Council on
Environmental Quality, Office of Science and
Technology Policy, Office of Administration, and
the Office of National Drug Control Policy.
Personal includes speech writers,
communications, media (press secretary),
legislative, and legal assistants.
Organizing the White House
Approaches to coordination
Competitive – FDR. Overlapping responsibilities, not
Formalistic – Truman, Eisenhower, Nixon, Reagan, and
Bush I+II (but Karl Rove rather than Andrew Card for
George W. Bush). Hierarchical, division of labor. Chief
of staff plays a central role in controlling the flow of
information to the president. LBJ tried this for about a
week – discarded it when one memo didn’t get through to
Organizing the White House, cont.
Collegial – Kennedy, Ford, Carter (but switched to
formalistic), and Clinton. Spokes of the wheel.
General tendencies: centralize, bureaucratize,
Pros and cons of each approach.
– efficiency, loyalty, good information, good staff
– Isolation, chaos, redundancy, lack of expertise about
the workings of government, demands on
Presidential Staff and Presidential Style
The President’s staff
The Chief of Staff – duties and responsibilities vary by
president, but has been a key player since Eisenhower.
Plays the role of information broker, lighting rod, and
The “Brownlow Creed”
Anonymity – staff should operate in the background. If
you make the news, you have failed the president.
Size of the staff – “small is beautiful,” yet staff grows.
Coordination vs. management
The “creed” vs. reality
Rudalevige – “the assembled heads of the executive
departments.” Originally four, now 15 agency heads,
plus VP, chief of staff, OMB, Trade Rep, EPA, and Drug
“adult show and tell.” Not a collective decision making
body. Clearly not “cabinet government.” Body is too
big, too diverse, divided loyalties, and frequent
So what purpose? Represent different constituencies,
lead on specific issues, help implement the president’s
Advising the President
The process of advising the President – how to
convince the Pres. he is making a wrong decision.
What leads to policy failures? Keeping information
from the public.
The politics of advising the President – press loves to
emphasize internal divisions within the White House,
internal politics. Competition for space at the Cabinet
table or office space in the West Wing.
Assessing the advice on advising the President. What
is the goal of the analysis: explanation or
prescription? Problems with giving advice – need to
have a better understanding of what works.
First Floor Second Floor
1.Jared Weinstein, Special Assistant to the President 1.Dan Bartlett, Counselor to the President
and Personal Aide 2.Kevin Sullivan, Assistant to the President for
2.Karen Keller, Special Assistant to the President Communications
and Personal Secretary 3.Candi Wolff, Assistant to the President for
3.Tony Snow, Assistant to the President and Press Legislative Affairs
Secretary 4.Deb Fiddelke, Deputy Assistant to the President
4.Dana Perino, Deputy Assistant to the President for Legislative Affairs
and Deputy Press Secretary 5.Allan Hubbard, Assistant to the President for
5.Josh Deckard, Assistant Press Secretary Economic Policy and Director, National Economic
6.J.D. Crouch, Assistant to the President and Deputy Council
National Security Advisor 6.Keith Hennessey, Deputy Assistant to the
7.Steve Hadley, Assistant to the President for President for Economic Policy and Deputy Director,
National Security Affairs National Economic Council
8.Dick Cheney, Vice President 7.Liza Wright, Assistant to the President for
9.Karl Rove, Assistant to the President, Deputy Presidential Personnel
Chief of Staff and Senior Advisor 8.Bill Kelley, Deputy Counsel to the President
10.Susan Ralston, Special Assistant to the President 9.Karl Zinsmeister, Assistant to the President for
and Assistant to the Senior Advisor Domestic Policy
11.Joe Hagin, Assistant to the President and Deputy 10.Tevi Troy, Deputy Assistant to the President for
Chief of Staff Domestic Policy
12.Joel Kaplan, Assistant to the President and 11.Bill McGurn, Assistant to the President for
Deputy Chief of Staff for Policy Speechwriting
13.Josh Bolten, Assistant to the President and Chief 12.Harriet Miers, Counsel to the President
Charles Jones’ categories of presidential
– LBJ: Majority leader.
– Nixon: Foreign minister.
– Ford: Minority leader
– Carter: Layman
– Reagan: Plebiscitary president
– Bush: combination of Nixon and Reagan
– Clinton and Bush II?
The Vice President
John “Cactus Jack” Nance Garner, gave up being Speaker of the
House to become Vice President under FDR. He later said it was the
"worst damn fool mistake I ever made." Office wasn’t worth “a warm
bucket of spit.” John Adams, the first vice president, described the
V.P. as "the most insignificant office that ever the invention of man
contrived or his imagination conceived."
Traditional duties – president of the Senate, attend state funerals.
Harry Truman, HHH, and Bush I “out of the loop.”
Changed with Al Gore, and even more with Dick Cheney. Gore was
influential in foreign policy, environmental policy, and “reinventing
government.” Cheney is widely viewed as Bush’s most influential
advisor on a broad range of issues, esp. foreign policy.
Stepping stone to the White House. VPs ran for office in 1960, 1968
(2), 1984, 1988, and 2000. Truman, LBJ, Nixon, Ford, and Bush I all
served as VPs before becoming president.