May 02, 2017

The Role of the Commander-in-Chief

By Loren DeJonge Schulman and Janine Davidson

I really just see the bigness of it all, but also the responsibility. And the human responsibility. You know, the human life that’s involved in some of the decisions.” — President Donald Trump, interview with the Associated Press

All presidents marvel at the gravity and size of the role of commander-in-chief at the beginning of their administrations. Two years in, President John F. Kennedy said that the biggest surprise of the presidency was that the “responsibilities placed on the United States are greater than I imagined them to be, and there are greater limitations upon our ability to bring about a favorable result than I had imagined them to be.” So the learning curve is always steep. Where presidents differ, often consequentially, is on how quickly and how well they organize themselves and their government so as not to become disastrously overwhelmed.

Read the full article at Foreign Policy.

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