Appearing Presidential: Advantages Of Looking Like A President

Alex Shephard of The New Republic and author Jeremi Suri discuss presidential style on the governmentality podcast.

By Allen McDuffee | October 23, 2017
Photo credit: Gage Skidmore

President Donald Trump may be unsure of exactly how presidential he wants to be, but what does “appearing presidential” mean anyway? Many people may not be able to define exactly what it is to behave presidentially, but most people can pick out unpresidential behavior when they see it. And with Trump in the White House, Americans are seeing no shortage of what many consider to be the antithesis of presidential behavior. For some, that’s a source of national embarrassment. For others, shirking conventions is exactly why they elected him.

In this episode, we look at Trump’s presidential style with Alex Shephard, news editor of The New Republic. And we discuss the changes in the very office itself with University of Texas professor Jeremi Suri, whose new book is The Impossible Presidency.

Listen and subscribe to the governmentality podcast in iTunesGoogle PlaySoundCloudBlubrryStitcher, or anywhere else podcasts are found.


Alex Shephard is the news editor at The New Republic. He was previously Melville House’s Director of Digital Media and a founding editor of the online literary magazine Full Stop. Follow him on Twitter: @alex_shephard.

Jeremi Suri is the Mack Brown Distinguished Professor for Global Leadership, History and Public Policy at the University of Texas at Austin and the author of The Impossible Presidency: The Rise and Fall of America’s Highest Office. He holds a Ph.D. in history from Yale. Follow him on Twitter: @JeremiSuri.

Mentioned in this episode:

Follow governmentality:

Please take a moment to rate and review the show wherever you listen to podcasts—it really does help others discover our show.

The governmentality podcast was produced and edited by Michele Zipkin. The show’s music was composed and performed by Jeremy Carlstedt.