© 2013

The Progression of the American Presidency

Individuals, Empire, and Change

  • Authors

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xii
  2. Introduction and Background

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Jim Twombly
      Pages 3-12
  3. Presidential Candidate Selection

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 23-23
    2. Jim Twombly
      Pages 25-32
    3. Jim Twombly
      Pages 33-44
    4. Jim Twombly
      Pages 45-51
  4. The Individual Presidency

  5. The Presidency in Isolation

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 115-115
    2. Jim Twombly
      Pages 117-123
    3. Jim Twombly
      Pages 125-136
  6. The Presidency Interacting

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 137-137
    2. Jim Twombly
      Pages 139-146

About this book


The contemporary presidency, and the nation it governs, is more dependent on the individual in office than ever before. The Progression of the American Presidency examines in detail the institution of the American presidency from the selection process, to the president's individual responsibilities, to his interactions with other actors in the political arena. Twombly argues that regardless of how well suited a particular individual may be for a specific time in office, he or she will leave an indelible imprint on the office for those who follow. Each successful president changed the institution in which he served by expanding its scope and power and raising the bar of public (and historical) expectations. Both scholarly and conversational, The Progression of the American Presidency is essential reading for anyone interested in the evolving state of the Oval Office.


decision-making Empire Policy

About the authors

JIM TWOMBLY is an Associate Professor of Political Science at Elmira College, USA. In addition to his academic training, Twombly has over 40 years of experience in local and state politics, including having run for local office. He is the author of numerous conference presentations and co-author of articles in New York State Government Finance Officers Association Newsletter, American Political Science Review, American Politics Research, Politics and Policy, and Policy Studies Journal. Dr. Twombly is also the recipient of multiple awards for teaching.

Bibliographic information


"Jim Twombly has written a comprehensive text on the presidency that can assist any professor seeking a book that undergraduates will find accessible and informative. Twombly presents the presidency through the development of the institution and the contribution of the individuals who have occupied the office. Extensive details on the foundation of the office, elections, and governance are complemented with a unique focus on the role of the capacity and character of the person who holds the office. Twombly's extensive use of historical examples assists the review of political science research in each of the major topics covered. Through these examples, he offers an undergraduate reader a window into the men who made the office and the decisions (good and bad) they make that affect us all." - Barbara Headrick, Professor of Political Science, Minnesota State University, Moorhead, USA

"Twombly's book offers a cogent, well-written overview of the American presidency that is highly suitable for undergraduate/graduate courses or for anyone seeking a readable, comprehensive review of the executive office. In clear and direct prose, Twombly surveys the evolution of the executive branch, uniting specific historical and contemporary illustrations with the broader, relevant political science research. The book provides a solid, comprehensive overview of the presidency with a specific focus on the evolution of the office, and the transformation of the modern American president." - Lisa Parshall, Associate Professor of Political Science, Daemen College, USA

"From topics ranging from presidential selection to the public presidency, Twombly's Progression of the American Presidency engages its readers and challenges them to think critically about the topic at hand and how it relates to the modern presidency. Academically sound, informative, and quite enjoyable, this is an impressive work from a topnotch scholar and professor." - Joshua Meddaugh, Visiting Assistant Professor of Political Science, University of Pittsburgh, Bradford, USA