The Center Holds: Obama and His Enemies
by Tina Bachemin
A narrative thriller about the battle royale surrounding Barack Obama’s quest for a second term amid widespread joblessness, rampant militarism, and one of the most poisonous political climates in American history. The 2012 election will be remembered as a fiercely critical moment in history. With huge victories in the 2010 midterm elections, the Republican Party had successfully blocked President Obama at every turn as they solidified plans to wrench the entire country sharply to the right. That 2012 contest offered the GOP a clear shot at controlling all three branches of government, and repealing much of the social contract that dated back to the New Deal. Facing free-spending billionaires, Fox News, a passionate Tea Party, and a ferocious effort in nineteen states to rig the election by suppressing Democratic votes, Obama repelled the assault and navigated the nation back to the center. Or did he?
In The Center Holds: Obama and His Enemies, Jonathan Alter uses his unmatched access and deep knowledge of politics to produce the first full account of America at a very dangerous crossroads. He pierces the bubble of the White House and of the presidential campaigns with exclusive reporting and rare historical insight. More than a campaign book, this is the epic story of an embattled president facing a historic moment many considered more profoundly pivotal than 2008.
Alter relates the untold story of Obama’s decision to raid Osama bin Laden’s compound, the debt ceiling fiasco, run-ins with black and Latino activists. He offers fresh details about the Koch brothers, Grover Norquist, and the online haters who suffer from “Obama Derangement Syndrome.” He portrays the Obama analytics geeks working out of “The Cave” and the man who secretly videotaped Mitt Romney’s infamous comments on the “47 percent.”
Former senior editor and columnist for Newsweek, frequent writer for the New York Times, The Atlantic, and the Washington Post, Jonathan Alter is the author of two bestselling books: The Defining Moment: FDR’s Hundred Days and The Triumph of Hope and The Promise: President Obama, Year One. Alter is also a contributing correspondent to NBC News and is the lead correspondent on the website Bloomberg View.
TINA BACHEMIN is a volunteer worker in the KPFA News Department.
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