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The Unitary ExecutivePresidential Power from Washington to Bush$
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Steven G. Calabresi and Christopher S. Yoo

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780300121261

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300121261.001.0001

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Martin Van Buren

Martin Van Buren

(p.124) 8 Martin Van Buren
The Unitary Executive

Steven G. Calabresi

Christopher S. Yoo

Yale University Press

This chapter illustrates how President Martin Van Buren was generally a loyal follower and implementer of Jackson's views, the significance of which lies in Jackson's enthusiasm when it came to issues regarding the theory of the unitary executive during the Bank War. During his four years in office, Van Buren governed much as Jackson had as the leader of his political party. Van Buren, according to his biographer Major L. Wilson, held “regular cabinet meetings” but “took no votes in the cabinet and, as usual, reserved final decisions for himself.” At least two cabinet members probably favored a national bank, “yet they readily deferred to Van Buren's views of party and presidential power.”

Keywords:   loyal follower, implementer, Jackson's views, President Martin Van Buren, Bank War, Major L. Wilson, cabinet meetings, national bank

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