Monday, April 20, 2009

"The Co-Presidency of Bush and Cheney"

New from Stanford University Press: The Co-Presidency of Bush and Cheney by Shirley Anne Warshaw.

About the book, from the publisher:
In the closing months of the Bush administration, bewildered Americans overwhelmingly responded to its disastrous domestic and foreign policies with a single question: How did this happen? In this excellently documented work, presidential scholar Shirley Anne Warshaw offers an in-depth analysis and exploration of the administration's key players to explain what happened – and why.

Although George W. Bush and Richard B. Cheney were inaugurated as the President and Vice President of the United States, Warshaw contends that these titles are inaccurate. Combining her study of the actions of both men, knowledge of the spheres in which they operated, and personal interviews with White House staff and Washington insiders, Warshaw demonstrates that Cheney and Bush were nothing less than copresidents. Breaking with popular sentiment, she denies that Bush's authority was ever hijacked or stolen. Bush, the self-proclaimed "decider," focused on building what he called a moral and civil society, anchored by a war on science and the proliferation of faith-based programs, while allowing Cheney to lead in business and foreign policy. Warshaw highlights Cheney's decades-long career in Washington and his familiarity with its inner workings, presenting a complete picture of this calculating political powerhouse. From Cheney's unprecedented merging of the vice president's office into the president's to his abhorrence of what he deemed Congressional interference in the president's ability to do his job, Warshaw paints an intriguing, and at times frightening, portrait of our nation's first copresident and the changes he brought about.

Chapters on transition planning, domestic and foreign policy implementation, the expansion of presidential powers, and the war in Iraq show precisely how these complementary conservatives ruled. With the facts on the table, Warshaw convincingly concludes that the legacy the Bush administration will leave is a testament to why two presidents equal one massive failure.