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55 of 60 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Book Every Republican Should Read, February 22, 2007
This review is from: Positively American: Winning Back the Middle-Class Majority One Family at a Time (Hardcover)
Positively American

by Senator Chuck Schumer

(Rodale, New York , 2007, 274pp)

I am surprised to be recommending Senator Chuck Schumer's Positively American and yet it is a very powerful and effective book.

Schumer is a liberal and very positive Democrat but he is also very smart and has some profound insights into contemporary American thinking.

For any Republican who would like to understand what happened in 2006, the Schumer explanation is compelling and sobering. He and Rahm Emmanuel have understood that a hard left Democratic Party will never be a majority. They were prepared to recruit candidates who were electable and to accept that those candidates would infuriate their more liberal wing. They saw a center-left majority as preferable to a happy leftwing minority. It is a formidable warning about how they will run 2008 and beyond.

Furthermore, Schumer has a much better sense for middle class than I would have expected. He is thinking a lot about how to understand the needs and concerns of middle class and how to develop programs which will appeal to the middle class vote.

Schumer's reelection by 71% (a new york record) was not an accident. He has a serious, thorough understanding of how to emphasize issues and achievements which will appeal to moderate voters who would be infuriated by the left wing of the democratic party.

Finally Schumer lists 11 major areas of solutions. Republicans could easily coopt half of those solutions and challenge Senator Schumer to help pass them into law.

This is a smart book by an intelligent, liberal Democrat who is determined to turn his party into a governing majority again. It is worth study by every Republican who would like their party and their center-right philosophy to prevail.
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Showing 1-10 of 10 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 26, 2007 9:41:59 PM PST
Last edited by the author on Feb 26, 2007 9:43:55 PM PST
Newt-

Here's hoping you can make an important difference within the Republican party by bringing the party back to its conservative roots. Regarding the Schumer book- yes, it is instructional in learning how the other side thinks and what its electoral strategy is. But Schumer is also disengenous about what his real intentions are- Schumer is far more concerned with winning over centrists and undecideds rather than defending his big government liberalism by being up front and saying that his plans would involve far more federal involvement in their lives. It's ultimately a dodge- and Schumer, clever as he is, is going to be the prime mover within his party as he advances his brand of liberalism underneath a deceptive cloak.

Posted on Mar 18, 2007 1:45:03 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 18, 2007 1:54:04 PM PDT
Mr. Gingrich,

It's great to see that you're gracious enough to compliment the other side when they have good ideas. But at the same time, saying that the book is "worth study by every Republican who would like their party and their center-right philosophy to prevail" is a bit absurd. The problem with the GOP is that there is precious little "center" about it, the hard-line ultra-cons and neocons have taken over completely, and its been that way for quite awhile now.

The Republicans are fast becoming an ultra-ideological, regional party of mostly Southern hard-line conservatives. This does not bode well for their success in the future, but when, as a party, you're this stridently ideological and divisive, you can fail to see what's barreling down the tracks at you- in this case, long-term irrelevance.

Here's hoping the GOP can tack back towards the center in a lasting and real way, and do more than pay lip-service to so-called "compassionate conservatism". For if the Republican party continues to choose ideology and divisiveness over real solutions that benefit the middle-class and bring America together, then the GOP's resulting long-term minority status and increasing irrelevance will indeed be blamed on no one but themselves.
.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 9, 2007 10:32:56 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on Dec 1, 2009 7:22:47 AM PST]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 10, 2007 2:48:33 PM PDT
Land of Oz says:
[Customers don't think this post adds to the discussion. Show post anyway. Show all unhelpful posts.]

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 23, 2007 9:54:48 PM PDT
Actually Land, if you're a C-SPAN junkie like me, you would've caught Mr. Gingrich talking at length about Mr. Schumer's book and giving it very high marks, during a joint appearance with Mario Cuomo. Newt's also well-known as a great lover of books. So its really not a stretch for him to be reviewing same on Amazon, and the guy sure does have the spare time, what with not being Speaker anymore, lol ;-)

Posted on Jun 16, 2007 9:41:05 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Jun 18, 2007 6:59:43 PM PDT
A lot of those moderate voters you talk about don't like a far right government either, Newt. You can talk all you want about the "far left", but most people in this country want out of the war (70 percent or so), and they are not all "wack job, far lefties". The majority of them are those moderates that have abandoned your party because they don't like this war which all of the GOP candidates (except Ron Paul) want to continue forever, and they don't like far righties forcing their religious "values" down our throats (so much for "smaller, less intrusive" governments). And as for your "values", how many Republicans (including you Newtie) have been caught cheating/fooling around, or in the case of Mark Foley, actively seeking young male pages while the Republican leadership was screaming for Clinton's head on a platter for having an affair with a GROWN WOMAN?

Schumer is a fool if he disses the anti-war movement. Congress's approval rating went DOWN after they gave Bush a blank check bill on the war.

Are you running (if this is fact really you) for president? The GOP field looks like garbage, honestly.

Did anyone notice that this book is being discounted 80 percent? Ouch...

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 19, 2007 9:27:33 AM PDT
> Did anyone notice that this book is being discounted 80 percent? Ouch...

Um, Girl, you DO realize you're talking about Chuck Schumer's book, don't you? So, what's your point? :-)

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 24, 2007 7:31:13 PM PDT
Steve Iaco says:
GG
You say: "The GOP field looks like garbage, honestly."

And the Dem field looks better? A shrill former First Lady standing on the shoulders of her husband. A junior backbencher with all of two years in the Senate. And a former ambulance chaser who is the utter epitome of a Girlie Man.

Just what we need in war time.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 26, 2007 8:48:38 PM PDT
Edwin-

No, ive never been associated Senator Schumer in any way, LOL. Other than the fact that we're both from NY, that's where the similiarities end. Ive followed his career since the early 90's, and all of my thoughts about him are simply what ive gleaned from his media appearances and the public record. As much as I think he is an extraordinarily disengenuous politician and a charlatan, he is most certainly very politically savvy- usually far more so than his Republican counterparts in the Senate.

Best,

Vincent

In reply to an earlier post on Feb 9, 2009 7:05:52 PM PST
Leo says:
Your Role Model says it right! Thank you sir. I just watched Obama's 1st prime time press conference regarding the "spending" or "bailout" or "stimulus" package being debated and the Republicans (all but 3 of them) are still clinging desparately to the same tired worn out ideologically divisive words and actions. I don't think the Republicans will ever really get it. Newt did - he got out - and now he reviews books and writes historical or science fiction and has a pseudo-intellectual opinion on everything under the sun. Newt was a flash in the political pan.
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