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does "impose authority over" mean "force control"? The second factor was the absence of Jerry Behn, the Head of the Secret Service White House Detail. In deciding that he would not make each Presidential trip Behn had not only broken precedent; he had left his agents without a leader. Had he been present, the bodyguards in Minor Medicine would never have dreamed of acting without his consent. But Behn was in the East Wing of the White House, gripping a telephone receiver and awaiting news from Roy Kellerman. Kellerman was his deputy. It is conceivable that a more tenacious deputy might have imposed authority over all "the Secret Service men in Dallas, though that point is moot;
Jun 10, 2013 2:43 PM
Answers · 2
In this context, yes, "impose authority over" means to "exercise control over." Because Behn (the head of the Secret Service) was absent, he left a power vacuum, and his men acted without his consent. Behn's deputy Kellerman could have controlled the Secret Service agents had he been more forceful, but he was not sufficiently tenacious and therefore failed to rein in the agents in Dallas.
June 10, 2013
Yes, it means he might have taken charge of the situation and given orders even though he wasn't physically present.
June 10, 2013
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