Dead Presidents

Historical facts, thoughts, ramblings and collections on the Presidency and about the Presidents of the United States.

By Anthony Bergen
E-Mail: bergen.anthony@gmail.com
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Asker Anonymous Asks:
Which three Presidents do you think would have been more effective as Department Secretaries or other unelected positions instead of the office of the Presidency?
deadpresidents deadpresidents Said:

How about I name the Presidents who actually WERE better Cabinet members than they were Presidents?

•John Quincy Adams: Secretary of State under President Monroe, 1817-1825.
•Martin Van Buren: Secretary of State under President Jackson, 1829-1831.
•James Buchanan: Secretary of State under President Polk, 1845-1849.  Buchanan wasn’t as effective or influential as JQA and Van Buren were, largely because Polk was a control freak, but his time in Polk’s Cabinet was still better than his own awful Presidency. 
•William Howard Taft: Secretary of War under President Roosevelt, 1904-1908.
•Herbert Hoover: Secretary of Commerce under Presidents Harding and Coolidge, 1921-1928.

And, just as a wild card, Jefferson Davis was a far more effective Secretary of War under President Pierce from 1853-1857 than he was President of the Confederacy.

  1. deadpresidents posted this