Monthly Archives: November 2012

MPSL VLog: Bully Pulpit?

Churches are not supposed to endorse specific political candidates or they risk losing their tax-exempt status. In October, pastors decided to challenge this rule when they participated in an organized day to endorse candidates. Professor Gaffaney explains.


The Presidency and the Bully Pulpit

Public Opinion -- April 22, 1874

Public Opinion — April 22, 1874 (Photo credit: Cornell University Library)

Bully pulpit, a term first coined by President Theodore Roosevelt, refers to a political office, specifically the White House, as a powerful platform from which to advocate a political agenda. In other words, the President of the United States is in the position to use his office to rally public support or sway public. Currently, Pres. Barack Obama has been using the bully pulpit in an attempt to educate the American people concerning public policy .

The framers of the U.S. Constitution never intended the president to have the power to influence public opinion in the way advancements in communication technology now allows. However, the framers never intended for women to vote or for for the United States to declare itself the worlds policemen. Nevertheless, here we are. Do you believe it is appropriate for the modern president to leapfrog the Congress and talk directly to the American people in order to influence public opinion on public policy?


Weekly Quiz: Test Yourself on this Week’s Events

The weekly quiz is now live in Mypoliscilab. Good luck!

Weekly Poll: Your Opinion on President Obama’s Middle East Policy

Last week, President Obama made his first overseas trip to Asia after winning reelection. Some critics think he should have been more involved in the efforts to resolve the recent Palestinian-Israeli conflict. What do you think?

The Daily Show: It Was the Best of Times, It Was the Best of Times

Bill O’Reilly celebrates America’s greatest tradition — a fevered ruling class lamenting the rise of a diverse new class that will destroy the American experiment.

Weekly Quiz: Test Yourself on this Week’s Events

The weekly quiz is now live in Mypoliscilab. Good luck!

Weekly Poll: How is Congress Handling the Benghazi Incident?

Some prominent members of the Republican Party in the Congress have harshly criticized the Obama administration for its mishandling of the incident in Benghazi on September 11, 2012; even calling for a Watergate-style of congressional investigation. What do you think?