Presidential Power

Archive Report

Status of the Presidency in 1968

The man elected President of the United States on November 5 will succeed to the most powerful office in the world. The Presidency is not one office but several: The President is Chief Executive, Commander in Chief of the armed forces, Head of State, and head of his party. He is also the government's chief public information officer. “This role,” according to an Army general assigned to the White House, “has assumed greater and greater significance with the increased speed of modern communication—especially with the advent of television.”1

The power of the Presidency is such that it may no longer be meaningful to classify Presidents as “weak” or “strong.” In the modern era, the President is virtually forced to be ...

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