The Orders That Never Were
This chapter presents a new data set of more than two hundred executive orders never signed by the president. However that is interpreted — as good management or as gridlock — something that could have been done “with the stroke of a pen” was not. Here, too, quantitative and archival analysis pair to help us understand why. The results highlight the fact that unilateral action has costs, which at some point outweigh the benefits. Those costs may be rung up in Congress, or the courts, or by public opinion. But as the exploration here shows, they may also be imposed by the executive branch.
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