Cover image for Managing crisis : presidential disability and the twenty-fifth amendment
Managing crisis : presidential disability and the twenty-fifth amendment
Gilbert, Robert E.
Publication Information:
New York : Fordham University Press, 2000.
Physical Description:
xxiii, 277 pages ; 24 cm
The twenty-fifth amendment: its origins and history / John D. Feerick -- The genius of the twenty-fifth amendment: guarding against presidential disability but safeguarding the presidency / Robert E. Gilbert -- Reflections on the twenty-fifth amendment as we enter a new century / Birch Bayh -- Presidential illness and the twenty-fifth amendment: a former White House physician's perspective / James M. Young -- In sickness and in health: medical care for the president of the United States / E. Connie Mariano -- Medical considerations in the determination of presidential disability / Lawrence C. Mohr -- Broken minds, broken hearts, and the twenty-fifth amendment: psychiatric disorders and presidential disability / Jerrold M. Post -- The president's spouse, the president's health, and the twenty-fifth amendment / Robert S. Robins -- The vice presidency and the twenty-fifth amendment: the power of reciprocal relationships / Joel K. Goldstein -- The imperfect but useful twenty-fifth amendment / Tom Wicker -- Report of the Working Group on Disability in U.S. Presidents / Edited by Robert J. Joynt and James F. Toole -- Report of the Miller Center Commission on Presidential Disability and the Twenty-Fifth Amendment / edited by Kenneth W. Thompson.
Added Author:

Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
KF5082 .M36 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

On Order



In Managing Crisis: Presidential Disability and the Twenty-Fifth Amendment, the contributors explore not only the historical beginnings and the subsequent development of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment, but also its contributions to the health of the nation.

The Watergate scandal of 1973-1974 solidified the Amendment's strength when it was invoked after the resignation of Vice President Spiro Agnew, and again after Richard Nixon's resignation. President Reagan's failure to use the Amendment in 1981 after being shot and seriously wounded disappointed those who championed its provisiouns but the strong backlash he received actually strengthened the Amendment and convinced subsequent Administrations to develop plans for its use. The President who takes office in 2001 is likely to devise similar plans.

The Amendment is positioned to be a crucial tool if, as seems inevitable, the country again confronts a case of presidential inability, whether the inability entails illness or even kidnapping. It respects the presidency by making it difficult to oust a Chief Executive from exercising his powers and duties, giving a decisive role to those likely to protect the president and embodying checks and balances at every point in the processs.It avoids a definition of the term "inability" so as to provide decision-makers with flexibility and escapes the legalisms that such a definition could cause in a time of political turmoil. Both a legal and a political document, the Amendment deals with its subjects practically and in a manner consistent with the principle of separation of powers. It is likely to ensure stability and continuity in the event of a national crisis.

The contributors to this essential volume are: Birch Bayh, three-term United States Senator from Indiana, who authored and sponsored both the Twenty-Fifth and Twenty-Sixth Amendments; John D. Feerick, Dean of the Fordham University School of Law and author of The Twenty-Fifth Amendment; Robert E. Gilbert, Professor of Political Science at Northeastern University, and author of The Mortal Presidency, which was designated a 1998 outstanding book by Choice; Jeol K. Goldstein, Professor of Law at St. Louis University School of Law and author of The Modern Vice-Presidency and Understanding Constitutional Law; Robert J. Joynt, Distinguished University Professor of Neurology, Neurobiology, and Anatomy at the University of Rochester; E. Connie Mariano; M.D., Personal Physician to President Clinton and Director of the White House Medical Unit; Lawrence C. Mhr, M.D., White House physician from 1987 to 1993, serving Presidents Reagan, Bush, and Clinton, and currently professor of Medicine and Director of the Environmental Biosciences Program at the Medical University of South Carolina; Jerrold M. Post, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry and Director of the Political Psychology Program at the George Washington University; Robert S. Robbins, Professor of Political Science at Tulane University and co-author of When Illness Strikes the Leader; Kenneth W. Thompson, Director of the Miller Center at the University of Virginia frm 1978 to 1998; James F. Toole, M.D., Teagle Professor of Neurology and Professor of Public Health Sciences at the Bowman Gray School of Medicine at Wake Forest University; Tom Wicker, former Washington Bureau Chief for the New York Times, and James M. Young M.D., White House Physician serving Presidents Kennedy and Johnson, from 1963 to 1966.

Author Notes

Robert E. Gilbert is Professor of Political Science at Northeastern University. He is also author of three books, including Television and Presidential Politics.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Managing Crisis is a useful compendium of essays on the legal, political, and medical issues surrounding presidential disability and the 25th Amendment. Gilbert (Northeastern Univ.) has collected a number of original essays by scholars from different disciplines, a prominent journalist, and a former US senator. The essays overall are well written and many offer contrasting views--a real strength considering that the issues covered are not simple and straightforward. There is some repetition throughout, a common occurrence in edited compendia in which contributors are not aware of what others are writing for the volume. The closing essay by Thompson is a previously published report that adds nothing original to the debate and appears to be just filler. With that exception, this book is a useful addition to the academic literature and is recommended primarily for advanced undergraduates and above. M. J. Rozell Catholic University of America

Table of Contents

John D. FeerickRobert E. GilbertBirch BayhJames M. Young, M.D.E. Connie Mariano, M.D.Lawrence C. Mohr, M.D.Jerrold M. Post, M.D.Robert S. RobinsJoel K. GoldsteinTom Wicker
Acknowledgmentsp. ix
Editor's Introductionp. xi
1. The Twenty-Fifth Amendment: Its Origins and Historyp. 1
2. The Genius of the Twenty-Fifth Amendment: Guarding against Presidential Disability but Safeguarding the Presidencyp. 25
3. Reflections on the Twenty-Fifth Amendment as We Enter a New Centuryp. 55
4. Presidential Illness and the Twenty-Fifth Amendment: A Former White House Physician's Perspectivep. 69
5. In Sickness and in Health: Medical Care for the President of the United Statesp. 83
6. Medical Considerations in the Determination of presidential Disabilityp. 97
7. Broken Minds, Broken Hearts, and the Twenty-Fifth Amendment: Psychiatric Disorders and Presidential Disabilityp. 111
8. The President's Spouse, the President's Health, and the Twenty-Fifth Amendmentp. 125
9. The Vice Presidency and the Twenty-Fifth Amendment: The Power of Reciprocal Relationshipsp. 165
10. The Imperfect but Useful Twenty-Fifth Amendmentp. 215
11. Report of the Working Group on Disability in U.S. Presidentsp. 223
12. Report of the Miller Center Commission on Presidential Disability and the Twenty-Fifth Amendmentp. 241
Appendix Twenty-Fifth Amendment to the Constitution of the United Statesp. 261
About the Contributorsp. 263
Indexp. 269