How Washington Invented the Presidency

The Constitution provides a framework for the American presidency. When the founders wrote it, the concept of an elected chief executive did not exist anywhere on earth. That position was created in 1787. When George Washington was elected as our first President, he had to build the office from the ground up. What he created and how he did it is a remarkable story, as Harlow Giles Unger describes in his new book “Mr. President; George Washington and the Making of the Nation’s Highest Office.” Listen in as Bob and Harlow explore the presidency as imagined by the founders, as created by President Washington, and changed (for the better or for the worse) by presidents since the founding. What are the lessons to be learned by tracing the presidency from Washington to Obama?