Mears, Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter with Associated Press, the oldest and largest news service, here writes about his career spent witnessing and reporting on the political figures and policies that have shaped America in the past 40 years. Covering 11 presidential campaigns from 1960 until 2000, Mears also offers a personal account of his life as a wire reporter, before the advent of cell phones, when he called in breaking news from a pay phone in Boston informally reserved for bookies and joined comrades in keeping secret the foibles of candidates before the rules of disclosure changed. He recalls a "casual" conversation between John Kennedy and reporters covering his rival Richard Nixon, the swollen and sometimes bloody hands of candidates after a day of campaigning, the dirty tricks of President Nixon's reelection campaign, and the social turmoil surrounding campaigns in the 1960s. Mears also recollects his camaraderie with reporters, including Jack Germond and Jules Witcover. This is a fascinating look at political journalism, the fast-paced world of wire-service reporting, and changes in both in the last four decades. Vanessa BushCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
About the Author
Walter Mears was an Associated Press legend, a reporter who was able to observe, process, and write critical political coverage, as another writer put it, "faster than most people can think." He reported on national politics from 1960 to 2001 as one of the "boys on the bus" and was said to be the most influential political writer of his time because his AP stories appeared in virtually every American daily newspaper. He received the Pulitzer Prize for national reporting in 1977 for his coverage of the 1976 presidential campaign and election. He retired after the 2001 presidential inauguration and now lives in Arlington, Va.