Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Johnson, William C.

Degree Name

M.A. (Master of Arts)

Legacy Department

Department of Political Science


Presidents--United States; Executive power--United States


The Office of the President embodies many different and related powers. For analytical purposes, these numerous powers can be divided into ten categories with each category having a different title. This thesis is concerned with that category, or presidential role, which is entitled "Chief of His Party." This role, in turn, can be examined from two different per­spectives. The first involves that area which pertains to primaries, campaigns, and elections. In that area the president or presidential nominee concerns himself with every aspect which will enhance his chances of getting elected. This thesis does not examine this area. The second perspective concerns the president's activities in the policy-making realm. In this capacity, the president becomes involved in the legislative process. The task of the president as a nationally-elected official is to propose a program for governing the country. Since Congress must vote on his proposals before they become law, the president must persuade Congress in his favor. The second perspective of his party leadership role concerns itself with his persuasive task in dealing only with his party colleagues in Congress. Two viewpoints have developed on this matter. First, the presi­dent may consider his persuasive capacity as party leader to be quite limited. Second, the president may consider his party leadership role to be as powerfully persuasive, over his party colleagues in Congress, as he wishes to make it. This can be done by using non-political powers for political bargaining purposes. This thesis employs historical examples and theoretical discus­sion as an argument in support of the second viewpoint. It shows how the president can increase the power of his position as party leader and the success of his legislative proposals in Congress through the continuous and planned use of non-political powers which compose the five constitutional roles of the president for political bargaining purposes.


Includes bibliographical references.


96 pages




Northern Illinois University

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