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Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

First in War, First in Peace, First in Retirement: How George Washington Shaped the Political Influence of the Post-presidency
by McEneny Ingraham, Courtland D., M.A., The George Washington University, 2020, 86; 27959886
Abstract (Summary)

As our nation’s first president, George Washington set many precedents that have continuously been followed by his predecessors for generations. Two of those fundamental precedents included warning the nation against divisive political factions and ensuring the nation underwent its first peaceful transition of power. While popular perception has remembered Washington as retiring to domestic life, that narrative has underrepresented the great amount of political influence Washington retained in his retirement.

This thesis discusses Washington’s ambition to preserve national unity through supporting the Federalist Party in electoral strategy in 1798 and 1799. This thesis also evaluates case studies where Washington reprised presidential authorities during his retirement, demonstrating that he had the potential to be a more powerful force after he retired. This proposes that the first transition of power was an incomplete transition that allowed Washington to step in where needed, a necessary feature for the Federalist agenda to succeed. Ultimately, this thesis intends to show how George Washington laid the foundation for retired presidents to play an influential role in American politics.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Brunsman, Denver A.
Commitee: Brady, Steven
School: The George Washington University
Department: History
School Location: United States -- District of Columbia
Source: MAI 82/3(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: American history, Biographies, Political science
Keywords: American politics, Washington, George , Political parties, Presidents, Washington, D. C.
Publication Number: 27959886
ISBN: 9798664790047
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