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The End of the Line: Romney vs. Obama: the 34 days that decided the election: Playbook 2012 (POLITICO Inside Election 2012)

3.71  ·  Rating Details ·  359 Ratings  ·  46 Reviews
Kindle Edition, 78 pages
Published December 18th 2012 by Random House (first published January 1st 2012)
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Jan 17, 2013 Eric_W rated it really liked it
Last in the Playbook 2012 series by Politico. They need to be read in order and are an attempt to provide some analysis of events surrounding the reelection of President Obama in 2012.

There are some nuggets that never made it into the news, or at least the news that escaped my attention. Then again, by October, I was so thoroughly saturated with 48 hour-a-day commentary and news that I was tuning it all out.

For someone with supposed administrative ability, Romney made some serious mistakes, some
Russ Skinner
Dec 30, 2012 Russ Skinner rated it it was ok
I was looking forward to this book, but there was little substance, and it seemed to me to always bend over backward to not offend Republican readers. Example: the discussion of the VP debate came down hard on Biden for going over the top in his facial expressions, but not a word is devoted to Paul Ryan's serial falsehoods. (I guess my political bent is now clear!) Also, how could you discuss "the 34 days that decided the election" without mentioning "Romnesia," and the Romney statements that le ...more
Scott Porch
Jun 22, 2013 Scott Porch rated it liked it
Shelves: 2012, ebooks
In the opening anecdote of Glenn Thrush and Jonathan Martin’s The End of the Line , their behind-the-scenes e-book about the last month of the 2012 presidential campaign, we join our regularly scheduled election already in progress:
It was more than an hour after the networks had called the election, and Mitt Romney had not addressed the media or made the traditional concession phone call to the winner. David Axelrod and Valerie Jarrett were agitated. Obama’s campaign manager called the Romney
Kurt Pankau
Jan 08, 2013 Kurt Pankau rated it really liked it
I've really enjoyed this series. While the election has largely taken place in public, the Playbook 2012 books have been an engaging look under the water at the rest of the proverbial iceberg. Later volumes (this is the last, I should say) have been a bit more serious than the first few, which benefited from the parade of lunatics slugging it out for the GOP nomination (I'm not being broadly pejorative: Huntsman was not a lunatic, but Cain and Gingrich sure as hell were).

This last entry focused
Tony Smith
Jan 22, 2013 Tony Smith rated it really liked it
The End of the Line: Romney vs. Obama: the 34 days that decided the election: Playbook 2012 is a good objective read regarding the closing days leading to the 2012 U.S. Presidential election.

If you wish to have an objective, journalistic quality read that covers what happened behind the scenes, then this is the book for you. I believe Poltico's team who wrote this book will soon discover this a solid reference for political historians.

I personally enjoyed learning about the issues that plagued
Jaclyn Day
Jan 15, 2013 Jaclyn Day rated it really liked it
Politico wrote a series of four Kindle Singles about the election called Playbook 2012 and naturally, I read the last one first. If you haven’t ever read a Kindle Single, they’re basically long-form articles turned into ebooks for Amazon…and then you pay $.99 or $2 for the pleasure of reading them. (This one is $2.99.) I’ve found the quality of the Kindle Single collection sporadic so far, but this one was really a delight to read. It was a fast read—it only took me about an hour and a half to f ...more
Feb 24, 2013 Donna rated it it was amazing
The End of the Line was so much fun to read—at least for this Democrat, given the outcome of the last elections—that I’m tempted to read it again. The authors, Glenn Thrush and Jonathan Martin, have (for political enthusiasts) the enviable responsibility of hanging out around campaigns, keeping their eyes and ears open, and recording their observations.

From superstitions in the Obama camp (such as the blanket ban on Thai food, which the team consumed hours before the devastating First Debate) t
Dec 22, 2012 Nancy rated it liked it
I have a rule - life is too short and there are too many books to be read to plow through one I am not enjoying. That being said, I did read "The End of the Line" and was able to follow it most of the time since I am a avid MSNBC watcher. Someone who is not a news junkie would not be able to comprehend it, but then, they would probably not want to read this book. It needs serious editing - there were paragraphs that I had to read and reread to comprehend, some that were just impossible - misplac ...more
Aug 15, 2016 Kaelie rated it it was amazing
I used to love Newsweek's long and detailed examinations of the presidential campaign that were published right after the election; these Politico Playbooks are the closest thing I could find to those.
Robert White
Jul 29, 2014 Robert White rated it it was amazing
Enjoyed reading about Romney's demise. Even though I wasn't a supporter, I thought he was a great man with principle. He should've listened to his wife, who encouraged him to just be "Mitt".
The last of the Politico Election 2012 series e-books. If you've followed the election there's probably not too much you didn't know, but it's always nice to read these things in context and in hindsight. The style's a tad jarring though--it picks up when Romney gives his concession speech and ends just as the election is called. Which is fine as a device, but I felt it didn't quite work here and would have preferred they kept it in chronological order.

If you read the others, definitely read thi
Jim Kelsh
Dec 28, 2012 Jim Kelsh rated it liked it
I always love "what happened" stories after presidential campaigns. Theodore H. White had the franchaise on these,, and unfortunately, 30 years after his death he still does.
This latest e book by the staff of Politico is pretty will done. It gives us the snarky backstory by insiders of how Romney lost an election that by all odds he should have won big. Interestingly enough, even as the polls and opinions tiltled in President Obama's way; Romney and his family were thunderstruck that they lost.
Dec 23, 2012 Diane rated it really liked it
If you're a political junkie, this book is a must-read. It offers insider coverage of the Obama and Romney campaigns, focusing on the
last 34 days before the election These are the 34 days following the first presidential debate. The book, authored by two Politico writers, is available only as an e-book for $3.00. This is the final book in a four-e-book series on the 2012 campaign. It divulges what I call the juicy stuff. Like when Obama walked off the stage after the first debate, thinking he'd
Feb 20, 2016 Beth rated it really liked it
Good analysis of the end of the 2012 campaign. Again, nothing really new here, but it did give some good insight to what was happening in both camps.

The real kicker for me--one that I still cannot fathom--is the complete falsity of the Romney campaign's poll numbers. There was a complete disconnect from what was actually happening. I guess that when you want to be deluded, you will be.
Jeff Raymond
As a good piece of longform reporting, this is a good synopsis of the inside stuff behind the last few weeks of the 2012 Presidential election. I can forgive some of Politico's basic biases in this one because of a lot of the solid insider stuff they uncovered, and, perhaps more importantly, the useful blueprint for future campaigns as to what works and what doesn't.

Indispensable reporting for those who enjoy politics or are heavily involved.
Apr 17, 2013 Joe rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2013
While these two retain their supernatural talent for turning a political blow-by-blow into a riveting narrative, this book is not nearly as revelatory as its 2008 cousin, Game Change. There's a real dearth of insider information. At one point, they're quoting Andrew Sullivan blog posts... not exactly explosive. Too bad, because the Kindle Single format could have worked really well for this quick & dirty entertainment.
Lynn Green
Dec 20, 2012 Lynn Green added it
Shelves: politics
I was a bit disappointed.

This account was workmanlike, but less than insightful than others I have read. It provides the bare details of the 2012 campaign, but view reasons for think like Romney's enormous hubris or Obama's ability to win back his base despite having so disappointed them during his term in office.

As a Democrat, I can say that the book has a good ending.
This did a nice job weaving in both sides of the race so there wasn't too much time spent on one side or the other. Not a lot of new insights but still was interesting. It would have been nice to have more on the post-election activity of the Romney team, including the post-election call that Romney did.
Brian Werner
Jan 13, 2013 Brian Werner rated it it was ok
Shelves: campaign
This Politico short contained a few interesting "behind-the-scenes" tidbits that those who closely followed the election would find compelling but otherwise it was a general overview of the final homestretch of the 2012 campaign. If you followed the campaign intensely, you'd probably find this wanting.
Dec 23, 2012 Stephen rated it it was ok
A good book if you're trying to gain insight into what happened during the home stretch of the 2012 presidential campaign season. However, if you are motivated enough to read this book, you probably followed the events real time, which means most of this will be old news to you.
Dec 20, 2012 Kathryn rated it it was ok
Overall read like an extended summary of several Politico articles that were published during the actual campaign. Very few new or interesting details. I also thought that the editing was terrible. My advice wait for Halperin and Heilemann's Game Change 2!
Christopher Ross
May 12, 2014 Christopher Ross rated it really liked it
Interesting behind-the-scenes look at the 2012 Presidential Election. Was pretty confident in my belief that Obama's team of data wonks ran circles around the established methods Romney chose, but still surprising to read how off the mark they were.
Jan 11, 2013 Cathy rated it it was ok
This is the first time I've read a book like this. It was an interesting read but nothing I really didn't already know. I wanted to know more about why Romney took so long before he delivered his cessation speech but the book didn't go that far.
Jan 07, 2013 Reed rated it liked it
Brief insight into the final days of the election. A bit disappointed with the lack of post-election discussion. Also much more could have been elaborated on; however, for a short $3 ebook, it packs a punch.
Jul 01, 2013 Andreas rated it liked it
If you a wholesale assessment of rivalling campaign strategies, then this is not your book. But it is generous with insight and candid comments by insiders about latestage decision-making, strife, team dynamics.
Alicia Brooks
Dec 28, 2012 Alicia Brooks rated it really liked it
A good behind the scenes account of the last few days of the campaign. Provides great insight into how the Romney campaign could have so misread the numbers. Momentum is great but it can't fix everything.
Jan 12, 2013 Stephanie rated it liked it
While informative, this book feels like what it is: an attempt to quickly cash in on having inside info. Nothing wrong with that, but I'd prefer to read it as a magazine article.

Todd Hildebrandt
Dec 26, 2012 Todd Hildebrandt rated it really liked it
Good, in-depth read on the ending days of the 2012 Presidential election. Appreciated the insights from President Obama and Governor Romney's team regarding the first debate.
Dec 21, 2012 Vicki rated it liked it
Great book for any political junkie, especially if you were involved in the Obama ground game. It gave some insight into why things were done the way they were.
Jan 09, 2013 Maryellen rated it liked it
It it what it is. An informative Kindle single, slanted slightly democratic. An interesting read, although not as in depth as I was hoping.
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