Top critical review
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on November 3, 2007
Edwards creates a book which may be a decent introduction to some more complicated ideas presented by more famous or prolific Political Scientists like Neustadt or Kernell, but there isn't a clear thesis to his book and much of it is uncited, which leads to incorrect assumptions, or things which are flat out wrong.
In specific, he writes on page 332 that "the houses of Congress are highly decentralized," and then runs with that assumption for quite some time. Edwards could not be further from the truth on this matter. It is a nearly unanimous conclusion among Congressional scholars (Smith, Gamm, Schikler, Dodd, Aldrich, Cooper) that the Congress has become almost as centralized as the days of Czar Cannon.
He also writes that Congressional voting records have been moving away from party line voting but this is flat wrong. The levels of party homogeneity are at an all time high and intra party cooperation is at an all time low. This negatively affects his conclusions in reference to the interactions between the President and the Congress.
While this book may be a good overview of certain things, Edwards has incorrect conclusion when it comes to the examination of Congressional / Presidential negotiations... and that relationship ought to be one of the clearest in the mind of any aspiring Political Scientist.