On this edition of the City Journal Books Podcast, Ben Boychuk and Joel Mathis discuss presidential power with Stephen F. Knott, author most recently of Rush to Judgment: George W. Bush, the War on Terror, and His Critics (University Press of Kansas). Knott, a professor of national security affairs at the United States Naval War College in Newport, Rhode Island, contends that historians have done a disservice to their profession by judging President Bush's record too harshly, too soon. His previous books include Alexander Hamilton and the Persistence of Myth, Secret and Sanctioned: Covert Operations and the American Presidency, and At Reagan’s Side: Insiders’ Recollections from Sacramento to the White House.
Among the questions we discuss:
• How did George W. Bush's national security decisions differ from former presidents?
• Do historians give some presidents a pass on abuse of power more than others?
• Is the role of Congress in wartime to write checks and shut up?
• Should Congress have formally declared war on the Taliban in 2001?
• Have the courts carried out a "quiet constitutional revolution" in the way presidents may handle national security?
• Did the Bush Administration's wiretapping program go too far?
• Did Bush invite the judgment of history?
• And much more!
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