on 26 June 2012
The 2008 election was an election, I believe, very few will forget. The outcome, even more unforgettable. I'm sure people will ask - where were you when Barack Obama was first elected President?
So incredible was the election it dominated the newspaper headlines, everyday conversation and classroom debates worldwide. One only has to consider what the 2008 election represented: the election of either an African-American President against the backdrop of the biggest global financial crash since the Great Depression, an unpopular incumbent who had started two extremely unpopular conflicts in the Middle East and a Vice-Presidential candidate that baffled, and frightened, the world. This book is, quite simply, the definitive account of how it all began. From the invisible primaries right to the moment President Barack Obama was inaugurated.
Such an exciting and historical moment in history deserves a book that captures every moment in full detail. Written like a novel, this book does just that. I bought this book just before I sat my January 2012 A2 Government and Politics exam to escape the textbook revision AQA inflicted on us and learned so much more than I had from any other book referencing the subject. The anecdotes so refreshingly written can be included in everyday conversation or political debate.
This is a splendid book, perfect in many ways, and one I strongly recommend to anyone interested in politics, left or right, Democrat or Republican.
Balz and Johnson put together an easily readable book about the two major campaigns of 2008. Obama vs Clinton for the Democratic nomination and then Obama vs McCain for the presidency. They do talk briefly about the other "players", Edwards, Richardson, Romney, Huckaby, etc. The part about Fred Thompson's "campaign" was very funny; "he wanted to be president, he just didn't want to run for the office!"
To those of us "political animals", 2007 and 2008 were almost made perfect by the machinations of the Democrats and the Republicans. Every day was interesting, politically, in one way or another. Johnson and Balz capture almost perfectly the politicians, the aides, the focus groups, and the electorate. I've read only one other campaign book, so far, Richard Wolffe's Renegade, which I also gave five stars.