Popularity or Policy? Exploring what makes an effective President

Istillian

Little by little, one travels far.
Vice Chancellor
Deputy Minister
Citizen
Discord Moderator

Popularity or Policy?
Exploring what makes an effective President

While leadership has been written about and exemplified in our community in a variety of ways throughout the years, we have recently gone through a few executive terms that have not been as well received by the public by their closure. This is not to say that our Presidents have not been hard working or capable, quite the opposite. However, we as Europeian’s are noted across NationStates for having incredibly high standards in our elections, and for our presidential candidates, often providing multiple critical reviews and assessments of candidate platforms, rigorous debates, and are certainly not shy from having our opinion heard throughout the term. The mark of a good leader here though, is the ability to pick both an effective and energetic team, to gear them towards success for seventy days, and to execute and achieve the initial promised goals. The crux of this investigation, however, is to see how our Presidents can or cannot marry the two beasts of both charisma, and vision.

President Kazaman comes to mind as one of the visionaries in the last year, with the end of term approval polling released from the Europeian Broadcasting Corporation (EBC) comments noting his “very intense leading style with the passing of treaties and two successful events.” Yet, the approval here for Kazaman at the end of the term was only 38.4 percent. This is noting that there was a Senate inquiry into the Europeian Republican Navy during the term, but most comments were positive in the reception of him as a leader – however, despite a foreign affairs summit, a reorganisation of our dispatch system, and more, he was not able to win the public with a level of communication or engagement that they had desired.

On March 1, 2021 the EBC reported that President Pichtonia had received high praise for his work as President, achieving a satisfaction rating of 79.9 percent, with many comments reporting that Pichtonia’s term was an incredible success. Pichtonia has been well received by the public for his excellent interpersonal communication, shrewd diplomatic style, and broad ability, evinced by having stepped up to multiple leadership roles in the executive, the senate, and the judiciary. The final tipping point for him not receiving a higher rating and a more successful report was the backlash and difficulties after The Embassy incident that drew wide criticism of its handling. If not for this, Pichtonia likely would have been the most popular and well received president of the last year, although, his energy and ability persist in his current role as vice president, and it is clear that Pichtonia retains the public favour, while maintaining his political power.

The end of term satisfaction polling from the EBC in September of 2021 rated Calvin Coolidge as the most well received President of the year, with his personal approval rating sitting at 92 percent, a whole ten points higher than his earlier term, according to the report from April 2021. One commenter from the September polling seems to have given a fair account of the public reception of Calvin’s term, saying: “Calvin did a good job as president – he set out with an agenda and accomplished it.”

The president with the most criticism received, the most controversial, and yet arguably most interesting for this analysis, was President Lime, who was reported to have a 5.7 percent approval rating, yet earlier battled one of the most intense elections, with both the Lime/SkyGreen24 ticket and Lloenflys/HEM tickets receiving 33 votes each, and the Senate then deciding the election result with then-Senator Sincluda being the “kingmaker” for Lime’s victory. However, this election proved Lime’s tenacity and charisma. He had the fight of an underdog battling his way into power, and clearly impressed many with a determined attitude, platform and policy aims, all backed up by his longstanding and successful legacy as a minister in a multitude of roles, as senate speaker, and senator.

The most recent presidential term has received a 46.6 percent approval rating, according to Euroweekly’s mid-term polling, with the biggest criticism being the president's communication. One commenter said: “Darcness has not really shared anything that has been happening in Europeia and we have not saw much being done by Darcness as the public as well. I am not sure what to say about Darcness's term so far, because we are not getting any signs that Darcness is doing anything.” And while Darcness has certainly faced some internal struggles, such as the resignation of his vice president, forcing him to conduct a re-shuffling of his cabinet, the biggest criticism seems to be his lack of providing insight to the public, and visibility on what he and his staff are doing behind the scenes.

So what do we gain from reviewing the presidents of the last year? Well, we can see that what a president lacks or is criticised for isn’t always the defining feature of their term. Both President Kazaman and President Pichtonia had what many in the public viewed as widely successful terms, they had the administrative skill and policy finesse to back up their decision making throughout their terms, and yet, both suffered foreign affairs nightmares that impacted the overall public perception. Calvin Coolidge, while not always facing an easy road throughout his two terms, was able to build his Cabinet into a strong unit to overcome the difficulties that he faced, such as multiple resignations, the Balder and Osiris tensions, and the initial barrage of the Frontier/Stronghold nightmare. However, he endeared himself to the public with his firmness in decision making, and raw communication and accountability in both a written and radio format, boosted by publicly tracking the promises from his campaign, and earning himself a second term in the Goldenblock that was arguably even better than his first in 2021.

But now at election time again, we are faced with two tickets promising a better Europeia. History tells us that the popular leaders are often followed by leaders committed to the restoration of policy and order, and the less popular leaders are followed by those fighting to ensure their administration has healthy morale, and a successful and stable term. But what we want as the electorate is an executive that can achieve an overarching vision with substance, a president that has the excellence of character and values that we expect of a Europeian, the ability to see through the goals that we elected them to accomplish, and most importantly, a president that will communicate with us, the community, so that we are heard, and we know what our politicians are doing on our behalf. Now all that’s left is for us to decide on who can do that best.
 

Istillian

Little by little, one travels far.
Vice Chancellor
Deputy Minister
Citizen
Discord Moderator
You forgot my record-breaking Presidential term, not very pogwater of you.
"Update: SkyGreen's record breaking term as President cannot be factored into this analysis due to an inherent bias on the behalf of the writer, in Sky's loving favour, of course. Also no polling was conducted during his term..."
 

SkyGreen

♅Wondrous Wisdomball⛢
Cabinet
Deputy Minister
Citizen
Hmm fair point.

Good article Isto, I'm proud of you.

I will say that a lot of the time, whether it's negative or positive, events can be temporarily impactful and then fizzle over time. So often we need to wait a bit to be able to view a certain term without bias. Our polls are often a good reflection of this, as they are very much affected by just what happened most recently.

This definitely gives us a lot to think about. Maybe even consider if the way we structure our polls is detrimental to our political culture
 

HEM

imperial senator
Forum Administrator
Jorts Connoisseur
Deputy Minister
Honoured Citizen
The president with the most criticism received, the most controversial, and yet arguably most interesting for this analysis, was President Lime, who was reported to have a 5.7 percent approval rating, yet earlier battled one of the most intense elections, with both the Lime/SkyGreen24 ticket and Lloenflys/HEM tickets receiving 33 votes each, and the Senate then deciding the election result with then-Senator Sincluda being the “kingmaker” for Lime’s victory. However, this election proved Lime’s tenacity and charisma. He had the fight of an underdog battling his way into power, and clearly impressed many with a determined attitude, platform and policy aims, all backed up by his longstanding and successful legacy as a minister in a multitude of roles, as senate speaker, and senator.
I don't say this to spread negative, but I think the fact the election was so close shows Lime's struggle with charism. He barely eked out the closest possible victory against a ticket that was cobbled together at the very last minute by "super veterans" who really didn't position themselves for political fame or fortune.

At the end of the day, a win is a win, but I think the fact that election was close speaks to Lime's challenges in selling a vision.
 

SkyGreen

♅Wondrous Wisdomball⛢
Cabinet
Deputy Minister
Citizen
The president with the most criticism received, the most controversial, and yet arguably most interesting for this analysis, was President Lime, who was reported to have a 5.7 percent approval rating, yet earlier battled one of the most intense elections, with both the Lime/SkyGreen24 ticket and Lloenflys/HEM tickets receiving 33 votes each, and the Senate then deciding the election result with then-Senator Sincluda being the “kingmaker” for Lime’s victory. However, this election proved Lime’s tenacity and charisma. He had the fight of an underdog battling his way into power, and clearly impressed many with a determined attitude, platform and policy aims, all backed up by his longstanding and successful legacy as a minister in a multitude of roles, as senate speaker, and senator.
I don't say this to spread negative, but I think the fact the election was so close shows Lime's struggle with charism. He barely eked out the closest possible victory against a ticket that was cobbled together at the very last minute by "super veterans" who really didn't position themselves for political fame or fortune.

At the end of the day, a win is a win, but I think the fact that election was close speaks to Lime's challenges in selling a vision.
The F/S plan you and Calvin had was published before our platform, and when you and Lloen did post yours, it was well organized, coherent, and a lot of people admired the way it was written, so it's hard to say that it was cobbled together.

I'd also add that while you didn't position yourselves for fame or fortune, you did position your ticket as the choice that has to be made for the benefit of the region. Your position as the regional founder who's been around since the start definitely gave you a big boost.

Additionally, Lloen is a very popular and respected person in our region, and not really a super veteran (unless 2018 makes you a veteran), and people would've been excited to see him in the Presidency for the first time, whereas Lime still had to struggle, partially due to what happened in 2019, despite serving in several other positions sucessfully.

You don't need to sell yourself short, I think the LloenHEM ticket was a formidable opponent.
 

Istillian

Little by little, one travels far.
Vice Chancellor
Deputy Minister
Citizen
Discord Moderator
I think that's a fair assessment HEM, and not at all taken negatively. Reflecting with some hindsight may have muddied some of my own perspective on that election, even when noting some of the points that SkyGreen has mentioned about you and Lloen being formidable opponents for a variety of reasons.

I do think Lime showed a general kind of "scrappy" attitude during that election which endeared him to some, especially with his early GOTV efforts that seemed, from the outset at least, to energise people, less so perhaps with the overall platform vision. So while this maybe doesn't equate so much to a high level of charisma as it does to a level of grit that won him the election, it is clear that he wasn't able to sustain that into the term as a popular leader.
 

Lime

I'm bloo
Citizen
Saying that a Lloen/HEM ticket which had a well thought out F/S plan released well in advance, a fairly detailed platform and very passionate speeches/comments made by HEM about the strong need for their ticket to be elected as "hobbled together" is a weird take to make. I'd certainly agree that I've struggled to sell a vision before and the campaign was far from perfect, but I'd agree with Sky that you shouldn't be selling yourself short. That was a formidable ticket and campaign we were up against, and saying otherwise just really isn't true.
 

Klatonia

Former Mayor of the City Council (in 2010)
Citizen
Really good piece, as always.

Still, I tend to agree with Sky and Lime on this one.

I don't think the Lloen/HEM ticket performed well because of/as a reaction to Lime's performance: I think it would have performed well against any incumbent president in the history of Europeia. I think it's more than just HEM's status as founder, though I can see why it could be considered as an advantage.

Nevertheless, I'd even venture so far as to say that HEM could be on the ticket of any brash, green, know-nothing newbie with nothing to their name but a loud mouth, and still make that ticket a viable contender against any incumbent with a stellar record and quasi-unanimous approval. Even if that ticket was a late entry in a Presidential race.

Plus Lloen's so good it makes them intimidating.

Even this plagiarism of Sky's comment is not enough to detract from the awesomeness of the article, though.
 
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