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Chelsea JohnsonMarch 11, yChelsea JohnsonPOLI 4015March 11, y1.1. Governors when trying to win the acceptance of the legislature are always on guard about the amount of power which they retain. Legislators are easily impressed, es-pecially by governors who barely manage to squeak by with a win. They must be able to distinguish as well as execute their formal and informal powers. In order to be a strong governor one must have a evenly balanced combination of both powers. Though even if they have weak formal powers, they may still be able to draw the legislature in by using informal techniques such as negotiations and strategizing. Another problem with finding common ground on issues with the legislature is term limits. Legislators are positioned ina short time frame putting a strain on governors to find substantial members to carry out important issues. Along with that a governor has to worry about the legislature being di-vided. Meaning that sometimes the party other than the governor’s being in control of one or both of the houses. Making it difficult for the agenda of the governor to be seen positively. Though that may seem like a difficult problem to bypass, in states such as Cal-ifornia their structure of state government has put a hindrance on the governor and the legislature to promote a productive state government. An example of this hindrance would be the governor trying to pass an initiative, but he would be required to gather two-thirds of the votes of the legislature. Making it even difficult for the governor to passa simple budget reduction. Going alongside taxes and monetary business, is the fiscal condition of the state when a governor enters office. Legislators like governors have ideasabout which direction they want to see the state government head. They want to show theBOOK REVIEW 1people what the government can do with being able to have some credit given to their ac-complishments.1.2. Depending on the specific issue, that will help the governor identify which ap-proach he should take to sway in the favor of the legislature. Ultimately the governor willseek legislative leaders who share their policy objectives. Sometimes they, the governor and the legislature, easily find common ground. This is most likely due to the fact that thelegislature may have worked alongside the governor for the formulation of his agenda, al-ready working out the kinks. And sometimes it can even be because they simply agreed with one another. But in times when they do not agree with one another, it can be the defining moment of whether the governor will have success or fail. Nevertheless the gov-ernor is always on his toes when it comes to strategies and tactics. Rosenthal makes sure that we understand that the governor can either play on the outside or the inside with the legislature. When playing on the inside they put the legislature on a pedestal, meaning they are always trying to confront them first with the issues. On the outside they allow the public to come before the legislature. They usually sway back and forth between the two strategies, just in case one fails. Another way they can pressure the legislature is by using the bully pulpit, what I see as the media and communicating. Most governors will not make it if they cannot communicate their ideas properly. Going to the media and gaining public support along with the support of other key groups within the state they can fulfill their efforts. Even if they do not choose this outside approach the governor must learn that they have to use there media for their own good. Bob Graham used to par-ticipate in skits in which he caught the attention of the capital press corps. He would sing and dance in skits in which they would make a mockery of Florida politicians. Using this BOOK REVIEW 2tactic his role as governor was more appreciated. Though if a governor sees his career go-ing south he may want to approach an inside strategy. Allowing for the legislature to want to make an initiative to pursue some of the items on his agenda. Activities such as coalition building, strategizing, consensus building, negotiating and compromise, these are all part of the legislative process. Tom Kean of New Jersey used coalition building to spark a fire with the legislature. By forming agreements with help of many go the state interest groups he easily impressed the legislature. When strategizing governors can sometimes come off strong but more importantly you must have timing. Governor Mitt Romney learned those key tactics when he was trying to pass his health care reform. He learned that he needed to allow leadership to conspire from somewhere else. And with that he backed down and saw success transpire from his reform. Negotiating can be seen as one of the most essential parts to policymaking, and most governors are reasonable. Though this process typically varies depending on the governor. Trading is one tactic of negotiation where governors learn firsthand that they must give in order to get. Compro-mising is something that everyone is willing to do immediately. Sometimes you find it easy to play give and take making compromises run smoothly other times it can be diffi-cult. Governor Keaton of Oklahoma can contest to the matter when he faced a union of teachers that disagreed with parts of his agenda for them. Governors should ultimately beable to play on the defense and offense. They should be able to influence and persuade yet they must be able to tackle everything the legislature send their way. At some mo-ments they may see themselves sitting on the sidelines, or using a veto to their advantage.1.3. When looking at the bigger picture every governor ultimately wins. Considering policy leadership there may be big winners but there is certainly no big losers. Most gu-BOOK REVIEW 3bernatorial success comes from factors such as what resources they have available to them, what they take on when the initially enter office such as prior issues, the condition of the legislature, also what they bring to the table. As well as the experience they have inpolitical office and what type of leadership behavior they inhibit. Some governors come into office having the upper hand and being able to bring together the legislature by showing them they can properly initiate an agenda. They must also prove that they can adapt to any situation because it can be easier to confront a legislature that is majority their party. Though in our times that typically is


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LSU POLI 4015 - BOOK REVIEW

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