From Publishers Weekly
Without fanfare, Hettena, an Associated Press reporter based near Republican congressman Randy Duke Cunningham's district in Southern California, lays out the facts of his political downfall in 2006— which some observers believe tarnished the GOP and enabled the Democrats to regain their congressional majority. Though the shockwaves emanating from Cunningham's downfall have continued to make headlines—among eight federal prosecutors forced to resign from the Justice Department last year was Carol Lam, who ran the investigation of the two defense contractors who gave Cunningham $2.4 million over a five-year period, more than half of it in just three months—Hettena doesn't reach for the broader political ramifications. He debunks the most lurid stories of contractors providing prostitutes for congressmen at the Watergate, but the corruption and sexual harassment he does pin down are more than sufficiently sordid. He also probes Cunningham's background as a self-aggrandizing Vietnam fighter pilot and combative politician who once got into a fistfight with a Democratic colleague outside House chambers. This straightforward account is a strong summation of Cunningham's ignoble career. (July)
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