Edward Klein interviewed nearly 200 people who have known and worked with Barack Obama. The author does not paint an admiring portrait of the President. He concludes that Obama is "...temperamentally unsuited to be the chief executive and commander in chief of the United States of America. ...something new in American politics--The Amateur--a president who is inept in the arts of management and governance, who doesn't learn from his mistakes, and who therefore repeats policies that make our economy less robust and our nation less safe."
Statements from some of the author's sources:
- Bill Clinton: "I've had two successors since I left the White House--Bush and Obama--and I've heard more from Bush, asking for my advice, than I've heard from Obama. I have no relationship with the president--none whatsoever. Obama doesn't know how to be president. He doesn't know how the world works. He's incompetent. ...Barack Obama is an amateur."
- Walter Anderson: "Obama has a political sense, but he lacks an executive sense. He has the same vulnerability that many legislators have; he's skillful at getting elected, but he's often lost when it comes to governing and inspiring others. In my view it's a mistake to compare Obama to Jimmy Carter, as some do. Carter was micromanager in all things. Obama is anything but."
- Tavis Smiley: "Obama is politically astute. I was in awe of how well run and on message his presidential campaign was. In all my life, I never saw a campaign run so brilliantly. And so it's been interesting to see how off course and off track Obama has gotten in the White House. And what's occurred to me is that campaigning and governing are entirely different things, and that all the things that served Obama so well in the campaign have come back to haunt him in his governance."
- Richard Chesnoff: "Obama's problem in dealing with the Arab-Israeli conundrum doesn't come from the advice he's getting... but rather from his one-man style and his inflated view of his own leadership talents. ...[P]erhaps more egregiously, he seems to have an exaggerated sense of his own depth of understanding of the Middle East, which is simply not borne out by his background or experience."
- Harry Alford: "When Obama became president, we were happy about the symbolism--America's first black president. We didn't really care about his position or views on anything. We just wanted a black president no matter what. We should have been more careful, as his views on small business, especially black business, are counter to ours. His view of business is that it should be a few major corporations which are totally unionized and working with the government, which should also be massive and reaching every level of American society."
- E. Michael Young: "It is obvious that Team Obama is deliberately following the Clark Clifford strategy. Like Truman, Obama called a special session of Congress to propose his American Jobs Act, knowing in advance that the Republican-controlled House would reject it. ...And like Truman, Obama is giving speeches all around the country, saying the obstructionist `do-nothing' Republicans in Congress are blocking his jobs bill, hurting the economy, and currying favor with the wealthy elites."
The pattern presented in the book is consistent. Barack Obama is under qualified, over confident, and pursuing a vision for the economy, the Federal government, and America's role in the international arena that is "naïve, simplistic, and superficial." Readers must decide if the author's research is accurate and if the witnesses and experts he cites are honest and credible. The book is well documented to help readers make a considered judgment. It is worth reading.