Stewardship Theory of Presidency

I declined to adopt the view that what was imperatively necessary for the nation could not be done by the President unless he could find some specific authorization for it.  My belief was that it was not only his right but his duty to do anything that the needs of the nation demanded unless such action was forbidden by the Constitution or by the laws. . . .  I did not usurp power, but I did greatly broaden the use of executive power. . . .  I acted. . . whenever and in whatever manner was necessary, unless prevented by direct constitutional or legislative prohibition. . . .  The course I followed [was] of regarding the Executive as subject only to the people, and, under the Constitution, bound to serve the people affirmatively in cases where the Constitution does not explicitly forbid him to render the service.

Theodore Roosevelt  [The Autobiography of Theodore Roosevelt (NY: Scribner’s, 1913).]