The President’s Cabinet: A Vestige of the Executive

Originally, during the fall conference, I was hoping to tackle a lot of the individual developments of Cabinet positions throughout American history, but seeing as there was not enough time or space to focus on such a broad topic, I decided to take a holistic view of executive advising.

As a result, my research paper deals with presidential advisers and the transition in their placement that has taken place from the Cabinet, which was the original home to Presidential advisers, to the Executive Office of the President, which now houses Senior White House Advisers, a new entity created during the Bush administration. I choose to take a historical look at the development of both those bodies, and speak to the reasons why the President has chosen to use the EOP rather than the Cabinet to place personal advisers he can rely on. I argue that the Cabinet, over time, has become a cumbersome body regulated by a number of factors outside the control of the President, such as location of origin of the appointee, the nomination process, and others that ultimately affect the people he can choose to nominate to such executive positions. Additionally, in my research, I found that there is always the concern that the Secretary will serve the bureaucracy of the department and push its interests, rather than those of the President. Consequently, at the turn of the century, the President has been able to find a place (the EOP) that is not under the same restrictions as the Cabinet, and that allows him to choose the advisers that he wants to have.

There is still much to be done in regards to my final draft. Obviously, strengthening my conclusion, and creating a cogent argument using my research can always be improved on, and I am looking forward to working with the other fellows to improve the paper.

See you all next week!



Columbia University

About ryncho

Student at Columbia University.
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