DIRECTIONS: Answer all three (3) of the questions below, typed, double-spaced, and submitted to me in Blackboard on or before Friday, Dec. 18 at 1:30 PM. You are to submit your exam through Blackboard. I would be pleased to receive your exam sooner if it is ready. Your exam will be graded based on its accuracy, specificity, use of pertinent specific information and examples from the readings and class, and general arguments. Late submissions will be penalized. Your total maximum exam length should not exceed 14 pages typed double-spaced (it may be shorter). Number your pages! NOTE: I do NOT expect to read two exams that are the same. If I do, they will be failing exams. You must write your own exam answers, and they must be written in your own words (direct quotes must have proper cites), not copy from books or other sources, which is PLAGIARISM, and will be treated as such by me.
1. It was a dark and stormy night. You sit alone, slumped at your desk, coaxing the last drops of what was once a cappuccino from a crumpled, stained, slightly sad paper cup. The clock says 1:14 AM. Suddenly, the phone rings. H-hullo, you stammer. Please hold for Ron Klain, President-Elect Joe Bidens chief of staff, says the annoyingly perky voice on the other end (remember the name). These words are as shocking to you as a sober Johnny Depp. Id like you to write me a briefing memo that draws from your presidency class on the Barber presidential personality scheme, the groupthink concept, analysis of the presidents agenda (youll recall the cycle of decreasing influence and increasing effectiveness, and related information), and the bureaucratic jockeying between the National Security Advisor/National Security Council and the Secretary of State/State Department in shaping my presidency. Applying these ideas (dont just list stuff), write me a memo that proposes how these perspectives should shape my management of President Joe Biden and the White House. As you start to hang up, Klain adds, and be as specific as possible. I hear that Spitzer is a bear for detail.
2. Oh, and theres more. (Great, you think to yourself what, does this guy want me to pick out Bidens neckties, too??) Drawing on Chapters 5-7 in Genoveses A Presidential Nation, Genovese lays out the traits of the post-9/11 imperial presidency and remedies for this over- extended presidency. Summarize and assess Genoveses facts and arguments by addressing two questions: 1) is the state of the post-9/11 presidency really as dangerous as Genovese suggests, and 2) how effective are his remedies likely to be? Spitzer told me that the more specific you are, the better.
3. James Pfiffners analysis of presidential character in The Character Factor proposes that the relationship between good character and good presidential governance is far more complex than the simple (and arguably false) bromide that good character equals a good presidency. Based on your analysis of lying, sexual behavior, consistency, and promise-keeping from Pfiffner, discuss specific instances when seemingly bad character traits (i.e. lying, sexual infidelity, inconsistency, and the breaking of promises) either help, or at least do not harm, a presidency. In order to answer this question, you must draw specifically and meaningfully from Pfiffners book, both for concepts and examples. (Note: for the purposes of this exam, assume that we all understand the meaning of lying, inappropriate sexual behavior, consistency, and promise-keeping. (Dont waste space defining these.) Are there any lessons here that might apply to President Trump?