Review by Choice Review
Rudalevige (Dickenson College) has written a very detailed, powerfully argued analysis of the evolution of presidential and congressional powers in the modern era. In contrast to assertions that presidential powers have been eroded at the hands of an overly intrusive Congress, the author convincingly demonstrates that quite the opposite is the case. That is, ambitious presidents have successfully breached constitutional boundaries and thus altered the balance of powers in their favor. This analysis is most devastating in the volume's critique of Congress for having failed time and again to defend its own constitutional powers. Although the title suggests that the book focuses on the post-Watergate period, there is detailed coverage of the constitutional origins of executive power as well as the evolution of presidential powers over time. What emerges is broad coverage of the topic, which nevertheless nicely sustains an argument from beginning to end. Rudalevige has an engaging writing style and a keen sense of how to integrate his findings with timely debates about such topics as the war on terror and the president's exercise of war powers abroad. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates and above. M. J. Rozell George Mason University
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