Even a cursory review of contemporary scholarship on the presidency and the federal administration reveals a resurgence of interest in the political thought of Alexander Hamilton and Woodrow Wilson. Developments in the last decade involving the apparent enlargement of the authority and prerogatives of the national executive together with the popularization of the idea of an emerging American bureaucratic state have contributed to this renewal of interest in the work of both theorists. What is especially striking is that to a considerable extent the contemporary interest in the thought of Hamilton, and to a lesser but still significant degree in the political teaching of Woodrow Wilson, is rooted in the crystallization of opinion that is critical of the alleged predominance of the executive establishment and the appearance of an “imperial” presidency on the one hand, and the systematic interference of federal administration in the affairs of the people on the other. Thus, for example, a major theme in both the popular and academic press during the period of American history bracketed by the Vietnam War and the Watergate crisis centered on the illiberalism of a powerful executive. More recently, proponents of participationist democracy, particularly the devotees of the public interest advocacy movement and the self-styled Tocquevillians of the public choice school, have urged reforms to check the concentration of power in the central government in general, and the national executive in particular. More importantly for the purposes of this essay, alongside this indictment of the national government has emerged an increasing tendency to cast Hamilton, witness the work of James McGregor Burns, and Wilson, a frequent target of criticism in the writings of that wing of the public choice school which includes Vincent Ostrom, as the theoreticians of a centralized executive-administrative order.