- Paperback: 258 pages
- Publisher: Vintage; English Language edition (January 6, 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 030747366X
- ISBN-13: 978-0307473660
- Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.6 x 8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 25 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,557,123 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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How Barack Obama Won: A State-by-State Guide to the Historic 2008 Presidential Election Paperback – January 6, 2009
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From NBC's political director and elections director. Readers who pick this up for, say, a quick check of McCain's margin of victory in Montana will find themselves tempted to embark on a full cross-country trip through these pages. States here are divided into four categories: "Battleground States," "Receding Battleground States," "Emerging Battleground States," and "Red and Blue States" (not clear why that wasn't two separate lists). Entries are from two to five pages long, more for states in flux than the true Blue or Red ones, with a clear format of both textual and tabular information on the state's 2008 presidential choice, its party support in the past, and what to keep an eye on in future elections. A final section of tables analyzing the 2008 electorate is fascinating. For all interested readers.—MH
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About the Author
Chuck Todd is NBC News political director, chief White House correspondent for NBC, and a contributing editor to "Meet the Press". He also serves as NBC News' on-air political analyst for "NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams," "Today," "Meet the Press," and such MSNBC programs as "Morning Joe," and "Hardball with Chris Matthews." Before joining NBC News, Todd was editor-in-chief of National Journal's "The Hotline," Washington's premier daily briefing on America politics. He has also written Op-Ed pieces for The New York Times and the Washington Post and for the Atlantic Monthly, where he is a contributing editor. He teaches a graduate political communications course at Johns Hopkins University.Sheldon Gawiser is NBC director of elections; he heads the NBC News election decision team in charge of making projections and overseeing news analysis of the exit polls. He was a founder of the NBC/Associated Press Poll and is a trustee of the National Council on Public Polls. Dr. Gawiser, in addition to being a pollster extraordinaire, is an Emmy nominated producer and winner of a special Emmy for his work on September 11th. He is author of five books and numerous articles on public opinion polling and elections, including A Journalist's Guide to Public Opinion Polls (Praeger, 1994).
Top customer reviews
one would read for inside stories, campaign gossip, or even theories of what these victories hold for the democratic (small 'd' as well as large)
of the American Democracy, (small d as well as large)
What I liked most was the introduction, which went through each stage of the process. I was especially fascinated by two points he made about how Obama was the only one of the three major candidates to give a speech announcing his candidacy, which caused him to write down his ideas on paper that his staff used as their goals. (Think "Habit 2: Begin with the End in Mind" from the "7 Habits of Highly Effective People".) Also, the way the McCain people dismissed Biden as a VP possibility because he's be too logical. To paraphrase the book: it's one thing to create an image in the media; it's another thing to believe it yourself.
Obama's campaign demonstrated far better organization than McCain's. Of particular interest was Obama's success with those Hispanic voters who had voted for Bush four years earlier. Obama was also quite popular among youths, although rather surprisingly their turnout did not differ significantly from youth turnouts during past elections. Especially noteworthy were the inroads Obama made among suburbanites and moderates. Middle-of-the-road voters moved Democratic in considerable numbers. A major concern of voters was the economy,overshadowing the Iraq War,and Obama and Democrats were more successful than Republicans in convincing voters of competence in handling the economy effectively.
The authors concluded that Obama's victory set the stage for Democratic dominance for several years. Only time can prove their view. Unanticipated occurances can easily alter political events. Democrats could be hurt by various situations, such as a further decline in the economy, a major international disaster, a Democratic successor lacking Obama's charisma, and Republican success in appealing to independents. Nevertheless, the authors presented strong evidence that Republicans will face high odds for many years in their quest to regain power. It is hard to see how they could dislodge Obama.
Anyone interested in politics will find the book fascinating, and it will be a useful tactical guide for both parties during future elections. Obama's presidency will draw the attention of many people over the years, and all will have to give attention to this study.