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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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PRINTED FROM YALE SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.yale.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Yale University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in YSO for personal use.date: 28 September 2021

The Preratification Origins of the Unitary Executive Debate and the Decision of 1789

The Preratification Origins of the Unitary Executive Debate and the Decision of 1789

Chapter:
(p.30) The Preratification Origins of the Unitary Executive Debate and the Decision of 1789
Source:
The Unitary Executive
Author(s):

Steven G. Calabresi

Christopher S. Yoo

Publisher:
Yale University Press
DOI:10.12987/yale/9780300121261.003.0004

This chapter aims to briefly summarize the historical events between American independence in 1776 and the Constitutional Convention in 1787 that gave rise to Article II in order to understand the construction which presidents from Washington to Bush have given to Article II over the entire history of the United States. The introductory part of this book is thus concluded by discussing the eleven years during which the structure of U.S. government gestated, as well as the key events in 1789 when Article II first came to be construed as giving the president the removal power. Although the theory of the unitary executive is generally associated with the Reagan administration, it is, in reality, much older. Its origins can be traced back 220 years to the framers' disdain for the weak executive branches created for the federal government by the Articles of Confederation and for the states by the post-1776 state constitutions written immediately after American independence.

Keywords:   weak executive branches, American independence, Constitutional Convention, Article II, Reagan administration, Articles of Confederation

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