Breaking the Fifth-year Curse: Transition Planning for Presidents Seeking Reelection Has Been Under-explored and Undervalued
After winning reelection, fifth-year presidents should be well positioned to pursue their policy agenda. Modern two-term presidents, however, have tended to struggle in their fifth year. This is largely because recent administrations viewed the transition from a first to a second term as a continuation rather than a time of change and renewal.
Planning for a president’s second term
Professor Michael Nelson, an expert on the American presidency, joins Transition Lab to discuss the political dynamics that define a president’s first and second term. Nelson explains how new presidents can maximize their impact during their first year in office and outlines the challenges two-term presidents face during their fifth year.
The history of presidential transitions
Director of the White House Transition Project, Martha Kumar discusses the history of presidential transitions. Kumar outlines how the Presidential Transition Act changed transition planning, the importance of White House design for a successful first year in office and talks about the best—and worst—presidential transitions.
The George H.W. Bush transition to power
Andrew Card, chief of staff to President George W. Bush and deputy chief of staff to President George H.W. Bush, shares his perspective on the surprisingly challenging “friendly” transition from President Reagan to President George H. W. Bush. Card shares insights from his distinguished career in the Reagan, George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush Administrations.