It only seems that way because we've had presidents who are lock-step with the status quo.
If we had a president who actually used veto power or repealed executive orders of the past instead of writing tons of new ones, which any president can do freely, then it could be a huge change almost overnight in how the government functions.
I definitely do not agree that the president is a powerless office.
They get to be the sole vote on almost every bill before it will pass, they get to speak and be heard by tens of millions of people reliably. People talk about their particular brand of politics daily on every news and political radio station. Everyone around them gains a degree of credibility in public opinion.
If the executive is powerless, how has Obama been so imperialist compared to past presidents and how is the office becoming increasingly more imperialist since the early 1900s? If you look back far enough, Congress used to have a lot more power than it does now. The executive and judicial both had less.
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