Tuesday, August 10, 2004

And what experiences do you have that would be an asset to our company?

This is a question for which people must prepare if applying for high positions of management in a corporate setting. Impressive credentials would be management experience, even at a slightly lower level. One rarely gets to be the head boss of a huge business without lots of prior management experience.

The same applies for the President, America’s CEO. It is not unreasonable to expect a President to have some previous governing experience. In fact, let’s see what experience they had.

George W. Bush: Governor of Texas
Bill Clinton: Governor of Arkansas
George H. W. Bush: Former Vice President (for Reagan)
Ronald Reagan: Governor of California
Jimmy Carter: Governor of Georgia
Gerald Ford: Former Vice President (for Nixon)*
Richard Nixon: Former Vice President (for Eisenhower)
Lyndon B. Johnson: Former Vice President (for Kennedy)
John F. Kennedy: Senator -- no previous governing experience
Dwight D. Eisenhower: General of the Army (5 star), Military Governor, U.S. Occupied Zone, Frankfurt, Germany
Harry Truman: Senator – no previous governing experience**
Franklin Roosevelt: Governor of New York
Herbert Hoover: Cabinet member – no previous governing experience
Calvin Coolidge: Governor of Massachusetts
Warren Harding: Senator – limited governing experience as Lieutenant Governor of Ohio
Woodrow Wilson: Governor of New Jersey
William Taft: Cabinet member – no previous governing experience
Teddy Roosevelt: Governor of New York
William McKinley: Governor of Ohio

So we can see, out of the 18 elected Presidents in the past century (which excludes Ford), all but five had governing experience. Only three were former senators, and one of them, Truman, was only elected to the Presidency after being promoted upon the death of FDR and serving nearly a full term. So, only two senators were actually elected to the White House straight form the Senate in the past 100 years (one of them with a short term as lieutenant governor). This makes sense; is it not advisable to have as chief executive of the country someone who was either second in command to a chief executive, or a governor elsewhere before? Would this not provide the President a wealth of governing experience from which he may draw?

Now, we are faced with a choice between a sitting president who was also a governor, and a senator (with only a few years, over two decades ago, as a lieutenant governor). Granted, this puts Kerry slightly higher on the experience tree as that other raving liberal from Massachusetts, but also behind 13 of the 18 elected Presidents of the 20th century.

Historically, senators are not elected to the Presidency. Let’s make this one tradition to keep alive and well.

*It is worth mentioning that Gerald Ford was never elected to the Presidency
** Yes, Truman was the Vice President (for FDR), but only for 82 days. He was reelected to the Presidency with a full term of governing experience.


At 12:10 PM, August 11, 2004 , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, but what about those three Purple Hearts? [/sarcasm]

Parkway Rest Stop


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