William Howard Taft never wanted to be president and yearned to serve as chief justice of the United States. In this assessment, author Jeffrey Rosen reveals Taft's crucial role in shaping how America balances populism against the rule of law. Taft approached each decision as president by asking whether it comported with the Constitution, seeking to put Roosevelt's activist executive orders on firm legal grounds. But unlike Roosevelt, who thought the president could do anything the Constitution didn't forbid, Taft insisted he could do only what the Constitution explicitly allowed.
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Bill Clinton: a president of contradictions. He was a Rhodes Scholar and a Yale Law School graduate, but he was also a fatherless child from rural Arkansas. He was one of the most talented politicians of his age, but he inspired enmity of such intensity that his opponents would stop at nothing to destroy him. He was the first Democrat since Franklin Roosevelt to win two successive presidential elections, but he was also the first president since Andrew Johnson to be impeached.
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The Founding Fathers series, edited by Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr., examines the presidencies of George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison.
Regular price: $47.93
By any serious measurement, best-selling historian Kevin Phillips argues, William McKinley was a major American president. It was during his administration that the United States made its diplomatic and military debut as a world power. McKinley was one of eight presidents who, either in the White House or on the battlefield, stood as principals in successful wars, and he was among the six or seven to take office in what became recognized as a major realignment of the U.S. party system.
Regular price: $18.89
In this powerfully argued essay, Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr. examines the the lessons of one polyglot country after another tearing itself apart or on the brink of doing so, and points out troubling new evidence that multiculturalism gone awry here in the United States threatens to do the same.
Regular price: $13.96