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The Legal Mind and the Presidency
The effect of the legal mind on the presidency has been largely ignored in the immense book world concerned with the tiniest ways presidents function and what makes them tick. It seems safe to say that it is time to take the bull by the horns. After all, twenty-seven of the forty-four presidents have been lawyers. Even with the advent of the most lawyerly...
The effect of the legal mind on the presidency has been largely ignored in the immense book world concerned with the tiniest ways presidents function and what makes them tick. It seems safe to say that it is time to take the bull by the horns. After all, twenty-seven of the forty-four presidents have been lawyers. Even with the advent of the most lawyerly of them all, Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, and many hundreds of books and articles about them, ranging from whether Clinton dodged the draft or whether Obama was born in America, little or nothing has been made of both of them graduating Ivy League law schools, being constitutional law professors, Clinton a Rhodes Scholar, Obama, President of the Harvard Law Review -their wives also graduating Ivy League law schools and practicing law. That they find themselves among the more vilified American presidents is only partly attributable, in Obama's case, to his African Americanism and Clinton to his sexual escapades. Unlikely mirror images emerge, coupling Abraham Lincoln and Richard Nixon, Thomas Jefferson and Andrew Jackson, Franklin Delano Roosevelt and the 'Dough Faces'. Ultimately we are dealing with a deep, persistent, historical American hostility toward being governed by law and lawyers. Albert Lebowitz has previously published an article entitled Three Variations of the Supreme Court's Legal Mind in The Akron Law Review Vol.24, No 1, Summer 1990. He has published two novels at Random House (Laban's Will and The Man Who Wouldn't Say No). A collection of short stories (A Matter Of Days) was published by the Louisiana State University Press. He has a J.D. from Harvard Law School and an A.B. from Washington University in St. Louis. He is profiled in Who's Who In America. Currently he is working on a novel entitled Her Own Man.
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