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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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William H. Taft

William H. Taft

Chapter:
(p.246) 27 William H. Taft
Source:
The Unitary Executive
Author(s):

Steven G. Calabresi

Christopher S. Yoo

Publisher:
Yale University Press
DOI:10.12987/yale/9780300121261.003.0033

This chapter is a comparison of Theodore Roosevelt's aggressive take on presidential power and that of William Howard Taft's more modest view. Taft attacked the stewardship theory as “an unsafe doctrine,” and disagreed with Roosevelt's view that “the Executive is charged with responsibility for the welfare of all the people in a general way, that he is to play the part of a Universal Providence and set all things right, and that anything that in his judgment will help the people he ought to do, unless he is expressly forbidden not to do it.” Taft, according to biographer Paolo E. Coletta, had a juridical conception of the presidency instead of a political one.

Keywords:   stewardship theory, unsafe doctrine, Universal Providence, Paolo E. Coletta, juridical conception, presidency

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