FDR: Transforming the Presidency and Renewing America by Iwan Morgan
14 JULY 2022
One of the greatest American presidents, Franklin Delano Roosevelt built a coalition of labour, ethnic, urban, low-income and African-American voters that underwrote the Democratic Party’s national ascendancy from the 1930s to the 1980s. Over his four terms, he promoted the New Deal – the greatest reform programme in US history – to meet the challenges of the Great Depression, led the United States to the brink of victory in the Second World War, and established the modern presidency as the driving force of American politics and government.
Iwan Morgan takes a fresh look at FDR, showing how his leadership enabled the United States of America to become the most successful country of the twentieth century. This astute and original assessment of a highly consequential presidency explains how Roosevelt enhanced the governing capacity of his office, promoted a constitutional revolution through his dealings with the Supreme Court, and forged a new intimacy between the president and the American people through his genius for political communication. It also demonstrates the significance of his organizational and strategic leadership as commander-in-chief in America’s greatest foreign war, his role in holding together the US-British-Soviet Grand Alliance against the Axis powers, and his pioneering development of the national-security presidency that sought to promote a lasting post-war peace for the world.
In fluid, immensely readable prose, Morgan focuses on the ways in which FDR transformed the presidency into an institution of domestic and international leadership to establish the modern ideal of the office as an assertive, democratic executive charged with meeting the challenges facing the US at home and abroad.