Presidential Commissions

Archive Report

Creation by the President or Congress of upwards of 30 federal commissions, committees, and boards during the Hoover administration has given rise to much discussion of the place of commissions in the federal government. This discussion has included considerable criticism of “government by commission” and has reflected some confusion of thought on the subject, owing to the indiscriminate use of the term “commission” to cover a variety of agencies differing in character, function, duration, composition, and powers. The use of commissions by President Hoover for various purposes is supposed to be an innovation in federal practice, although research discloses that 492 commissions and similar bodies were established during the period from the time President Roosevelt succeeded to office in 1901 to the end of ...

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