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The Center Holds: Obama and His Enemiesby Jonathan Alter
Synopses & Reviews
A narrative thriller about the battle royale surrounding Barack Obama’s quest for a second term amid widespread joblessness and one of the most poisonous political climates in American history.
In this sequel to his bestselling The Promise, Jonathan Alter digs into the back story of the campaign and Obama’s performance as president. This will be the most penetrating account of how Obama won or lost the election and how he confronted the implacable forces arrayed against him — a sluggish economy, vicious partisan opposition, his own failures as a politician and communicator.
The book will bring to life today’s climactic clash over the fate of the middle class and the future of the American Dream. On the ground and in the air, the 2012 election pits Obama’s still-formidable citizens’ army versus Mitt Romney’s Super PAC moneyed elite.
Alter takes readers deep inside Obama’s Chicago headquarters and Romney’s Boston-based campaign, as the candidates battle over jobs, their records, and who is more out of touch.
Alter explains why the 2012 election will be long remembered as a pivotal contest. At stake, he writes, is not just the presidency but the role of government and our definition of what we owe each other.
Obama has always believed he could hit the three-point shot at the buzzer. Alter takes us on the court with the president as he tries to nail the last big shot of his political career.
"Alter’s well-paced narrative delights in campaign folderol, but he also analyzes deeper currents — including state-level Republican ‘voter-suppression’ efforts aimed at Democrats, and the immense Obama field operation that wedded digital modeling and social networks to old-fashioned door-to-door organizing in revolutionary new ways. He makes the horse race coherent by teasing out the class politics and demographic shifts driving it. Lucid, entertaining, and alive to the reality behind the posturing, Alter’s report reveals the high stakes and far-reaching import of the 2012 decision." Publishers Weekly, Starred Review
From the bestselling author of The Promise, the thrilling story of one of the most momentous contests in American history, the Battle Royale between Obama and his enemies from the 2010 midterms through the 2013 inauguration. The election of 2012 will be remembered as a hinge of history. With huge victories in the 2010 midterm elections the Republican Party had blocked President Obama at every turn and made plans to wrench the country sharply to the right. 2012 offered the GOP a clear shot at controlling all three branches of government and repealing much of the social contract dating back to the New Deal.
About the Author
Jonathan Alter is a columnist for Bloomberg View and an analyst and contributing correspondent for NBC News and MSNBC. He is a former senior editor and columnist for Newsweek, where he worked twenty-eight years, writing more than fifty cover stories. He has also written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Atlantic, and other publications. He is the author of The Promise: President Obama, Year One and The Defining Moment: FDR’s Hundred Days and the Triumph of Hope, both New York Times bestsellers.
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