From Publishers Weekly
Sabato, founder of the Center for Politics at the University of Virginia, ventures bravely into the controversial waters of constitutional reform. Sabato argues that the founders never intended the Constitution to be timeless, but rather understood that government structures, ossified by constitutional neglect [can] become fundamentally unfair and tilted to those already in power. Sabato's reforms are consistent with the values he believes underpin the Constitution—fairness, idealism, pragmatism and focus on the needs of the present and the future—while attempting to mitigate social inequities. His lucid if unorthodox suggestions include a single six-year presidential term that could be extended another two years by referendum; limiting federal and Supreme Court justices to a 15-year term; a larger House of Representatives that would, among other benefits, allow for greater diversity in Congress. His reforms encompass the entire citizenry, who would be required to perform two years of national civilian or military service in what he calls a Bill of Responsibilities. While there's room for skepticism and unintended consequences in some of his suggestions, Sabato makes strong, cogent arguments. (Oct.)
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About the Author
The founder and director of the renowned Center for Politics at the University of Virginia, Larry J. Sabato has been called "the Dr. Phil of American politics." He has appeared on every national television and radio program, including 60 Minutes, the Today Show, Hardball, The O'Reilly Factor, and Nightline. A Rhodes scholar, he received his doctorate in politics from Oxford, and has been on the faculty of UVA since 1978. He is the author of countless articles and some twenty books, including Feeding Frenzy: Attack Journalism & American Politics, The Rise of Political Consultants: New Ways of Winning Elections, and most recently The Sixth Year Itch: The Rise and Fall of George W. Bush's Presidency, and he coanchored the BBC's coverage of the 2006 election. In 2002, the University of Virginia gave him its highest honor, the Thomas Jefferson Award, given annually to one person since 1955.