11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
If every voter read this book, Bob Dole would be president,
By A Customer
This review is from: What It Takes: The Way to the White House (Paperback)
Unfortunately for Dole, Richard Ben Cramer tells the story
of Dole's rise from small-town poverty to near-fatal war
injury better than the Dole campaign did last year. The
author paints a portrait of the 1988 presidential candidates that
is vivid and human, making them more than the caricatures that
we see in our television screens and newspapers.
I worked for a Democratic candidate during the 1988 campaign.
Cramer's storyline and energetic, somewhat frantic writing
style both mirrors and reveals the hectic, seize-the-day
atmosphere of a presidential campaign.
His greatest contribution, however, is the tremendous insight
he gives us of the men who wanted to become the best known
and most powerful person in the world and believed they could do it
within a matter of years by traveling to small towns and big
cities as they meet with ordinary citizens the wealthiest
Americans. They are both crazy and courageous and Cramer
tells us how they became so as he digs through their personal
histories from grade school to the present.
Dole may no longer be a player on the American political
scene. But Al Gore, Dick Gephardt, Jesse Jackson, Pat
Robertson, and Jack Kemp still are. Thus, this book is still
relevant. Above all, it's a good read. For those who want to
know what it's really like inside a presidential campaign or
the head of a presidential candidate, this is the best book
and most unique book written since The Making of the President
1960 by the legendary T.H. White.