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A Puritan in Babylon, The Story of Calvin Coolidge Paperback – December 1, 2001
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White does a good job of showing how someone like Coolidge (and Harding) rose to the top of the heap. Throughout this book, Coolidge is shown as an honest politician who lived off his salary. He even stayed in boarding houses when he was Governor and Vice President. He was very shy and limited his talking. He asked people to vote for him and they did. He only lost one election, so this shows people trusted him. He worked the political system for his constituents and his beliefs. Although conservative, he backed some very liberal ideas at the time including the vote for women and opposed anti immigration efforts against the Japanese. When he told people what he was going to do, people could trust he would do it. He even made fun of himself and his personality. His personal characteristics were very admirable.
White's biography is a bit dry at times, but the subject comes across in very human terms. The book is divided into four sections, so one can read bits and pieces of that history which may interest the reader. The first one hundred pages was slow going, but it gets better after that. For those interested in a President who governed for six years, this is a good read.