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Running Against the Devil: A Plot to Save America from Trump — And Democrats from Themselves
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Running Against the Devil: A Plot to Save America from Trump — And Democrats from Themselves

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  1,292 ratings  ·  249 reviews
The longtime Republican strategist and #1 New York Times bestselling author of Everything Trump Touches Dies is back with a guidebook for beating Trump's tricks, traps, and Twitter feed in 2020.

Donald Trump is exactly the disaster we feared for America. Hated by a majority of Americans, Trump's administration is rocked by daily scandals, and he's embarrassed us at home an
...more
Hardcover, 352 pages
Published January 14th 2020 by Crown Forum
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Average rating 4.17  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,292 ratings  ·  249 reviews


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Start your review of Running Against the Devil: A Plot to Save America from Trump — And Democrats from Themselves
Jeffrey Keeten
Mar 13, 2020 rated it really liked it
”Donald Trump broke something fundamental in our politics: the value of facts and truth. He alters the truth based on whims, and spreads both accidental and deliberate misinformation. His more cynical followers view this as part of his five-dimensional chess game, but America is now a post-truth republic, to our detriment.

In 2020, Trump is counting on his ability to lie his way to a second term. He will do so shamelessly, constantly, and even proudly.

Trump’s endless, torrential outpouring of out
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Will Byrnes
Why this Book? To paraphrase the political scientist Liam Neeson: “I have a very particular set of skills. Skills that I acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a nightmare for people like you.”
…I no longer use those skills to serve the party I once loved. That party is gone…I’m telling you this because Democrats are going to lose to Donald Trump in 2020 unless they understand what my former team is about to do.

…Think of it this way: When a senior KGB officer who decided he’d ha
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Bill Kerwin
Mar 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics, 21st-c-amer

Rick Wilson’s Everything Trump Touches Dies was the funniest political book of the 2018. It was grim humor, certainly, but robust grim humor, filled with vicious takedowns of all the human caricatures scribbled in the margins of the Trumpian universe—including an expert demolition of the Orange Julius Caesar himself.

Wilson has done it again, but I find I’m not laughing quite as hard this time.

But I don’t think that this is Wilson’s fault. This endless farce we call the Trump Administration, thi
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Kelsie
Jan 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
Rick Wilson is crass and obnoxious, but this direct "come to Jesus" talk seems to be exactly what democrats need to win 2020. He makes a very sensible argument here, and he seems to have the expertise and experience to back it up. He does an excellent job hitting home on some key takeaways for strategizing in 2020 while being an equal opportunity offender in his humor.

To summarize, democrats should be playing the election as a referendum against Donald Trump (prepare for this phrase to be repea
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John Sunseri
Jan 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Just finished RUNNING AGAINST THE DEVIL by Rick Wilson (former Republican strategist, former Republican, all-around hilarious bastard), and I'm not suggesting you all read it, if you care about the 2020 Presidential election.

I'm ordering you to do so, I'm ordering you to take notes, and I'm ordering you to get this book into the hands of every Democratic strategist, organization, and influencer you can find. Wilson lays out perhaps the only way we can keep trump from winning again. I'm not exagg
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Marty Fried
Apr 24, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
After finishing it, I upped it 1/2 star to 4 stars.

I quit reading at 95%, but later finished it. I did like it, but it was a bit repetitive, and already getting dated. It was informative, and humorous at times, but I live in the California Bay Area, and can't do much to affect the next election. But I'll do what I can, and perhaps make use of some of his tips. I've looked out for some of his interviews and appearances since reading the book, and I like him more as I get to know him (EDIT: "Him"
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AC
Feb 02, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: current-events
(Finished Feb. 2. But six weeks later, and the plague has overtaken everything. And now this book seems almost like a period piece.)

If you can ignore the jokey schtick that Wilson likes to indulge in, this is a damned smart piece of political consultancy in action. And for those Dems who find themselves confused by the current situation, he will provide both clarity and relentlessly realistic roadmap of what must be done.
Sarah
God, I hope democrats working in the campaign of the eventual nominee read this book! Rick is my favorite conservative in the age of Trump, and listening to his snark and humor in this book was highly entertaining.
Shelby
Jan 28, 2020 rated it did not like it
This book hates Trump. That is all this is. He is just another lying hater. His idea and description of how he feels southerners are stupid, making fun of their accents indicates he is a wounded liberal. This is a very sick book full of hate if I could give it zero stars I would
Steve Greenleaf
When, as in a John LeCarre novel, an agent from the KGB comes to the West and offers all the goods, one must pause. Members of the CIA or MI6 must ask: "How can we know that we can trust this guy, that what he's the real thing and not a plant for sowing misinformation? Are we being played? Perhaps he's a mole. Why should we trust someone who's done us in so many times in the past?" Democrats should be asking these questions of Rick Wilson, a Republican operative since the 1980s who's been slayin ...more
Donna Hines
Jan 31, 2020 rated it really liked it
"Get to work on issues that matter" this was the slogan at the end of a television ad against Matt Cartwright Congressman of the 8th Congressional District here in Luzerne County by the Republicans.. We can start right here! The district, was numbered 17th district from 2013-2019 and contains a huge chunk of northeastern Pennsylvania.
Or this next line found in 'Running Against the Devil'...
"They were politicians; he was a performer. They were driven by policy; he was driven by celebrity. They ca
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Jeanette (Again)

Apostate Republican strategist trying to help the Dems get out of their own way so they can defeat the Evil Orange Ogre. I fear the Dems are too enamored with their highfalutin' idealism to play dirty in the way that is required to beat the pure unmitigated evil that is the Republican party. I sincerely hope I am wrong.
...more
Mannie Liscum
Jan 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
“Listen Liberals, I’m about to go all native on your asses and lay down the skinny-s**t; you need to get your lackluster act together to beat this f-tard Orange Demon in the WH, and here’s how...” - these aren’t Rick Wilson’s words, but I’m paraphrasing. I hope you get a sense in one sentence what his latest book, “Running Against the Devil,” is all about and who it’s target audience is. Trumpland need not waste their one read of the decade here (I’m trying in this review to channel Wilson’s bit ...more
Lisa
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Playbook

It is just as advertised - a brutally honest political playbook that also raises the alarm on how much is at stake.
Kristi
Feb 10, 2020 rated it really liked it
This book is harsh and funny and spot on!
Trump is human scum, and the Democratic nominee has got to make their campaign a referendum on Trump. This crap bag has got to be sent packing.
Ryan Suskey
Feb 12, 2020 rated it liked it
Crass, coarse, blunt, uncomfortable... mostly accurate! This book was a sharp contrast to another recently finished read (Listen Liberal!) and I appreciated the chance to see a different perspective.

Ultimately the message I take away from this book isn’t that a progressive can’t win against DJT, but rather that the messaging and focus of the campaign needs to be why Trump is unfit. Just saying “Hey, Trump lies!” Isn’t enough. Nor is it ok to just say “here’s why all of my policies are better.” I
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Tom Walsh
Jan 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A powerful screed with a Ton of Good Advice.

After he spends a lot of the first half of the book on a welcome, redundant and probably unnecessary but well-deserved Rant against the EVIL of Donald J. Trump, Wilson provides a Truckload of tips that hopefully will be heeded by the people who will run the most important Presidential Campaign in American History.

He’s snarky as Hell, but full of wisdom that can only be gotten by absorbing the scars of numerous, ugly, political campaigns and learning
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Tom
Feb 12, 2020 rated it did not like it
Nothing new here.
Tina Platt
Mar 25, 2020 rated it really liked it
Not the cathartic read of ‘Everything Trump Touches Dies’ but a deeper dive into the seedy world of politics. Really depressing right now.
Linda
Jan 03, 2021 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, politics
I generally enjoy Rick Wilson's take on the world, and I'm consistently entertained by his profane snipes at Trump on Twitter, so I was looking forward to this one more than most political books. Unfortunately for Wilson, and I'm sure many others whose "timely" books got completely undermined by the pandemic, the justifiable dominance of the coronavirus over every 2020 news cycle took some of the punch out of the points the book was written to make. In my case, I also spent a long time waiting f ...more
Renay Russell
Sep 20, 2020 rated it really liked it
I find Rick Wilson’s sarcasm really funny and I like the way he writes. I preferred Everything Trump Touched Dies, but this was pretty good too!
Barbara Escher
Apr 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
From first to last, I was struck by the fact that this was written by a Republican strategist who knew every trick Republicans had played in the past, because he was involved - if not responsible - for some of them. I wish the Democratic party would hire him as a high-level adviser because he understands the full measure of the opposition's commitment, treachery, and villainy. He sees very clearly that the Republicans will win at all cost, sacrificing the most basic values we once held dear, suc ...more
Andrew Ysasi
Feb 03, 2020 rated it it was ok
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Mike  Davis
May 03, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I don't give many 5-star ratings although I choose my reading carefully and reject those I know I would not like or don't trust. This book is different. Wilson was a top GOP strategist for Reagan and Bush. He bailed out when Trump showed up. He is a hard-line conservative and is disgusted with Trump has done to "his" GOP party.

Essentially what this book is, is an instruction manual on how Wilson and the GOP won against their Democratic opponents (except Obama of course,) how Trump managed to win
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Andrew Pratley
Aug 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
For those who think books about politics is boring then this is the antidote. I don't so & I always going to be drawn to a book written by the ever entertaining Rick Wilson. This though is a serious a book about a serious subject which is how to defeat Donald Trump & his tribe in 2020.

We do live in strange times. We not only have a pandemic to endure but we have books published by former Republican Political Consultants pleading with their normal Democratic opponents to beat their Republican Pr
...more
Sharon L.
Feb 12, 2020 rated it really liked it
4 stars. Political strategist Rick Wilson writes about the challenges facing Democrats in 2020. A veteran political consultant, and fervent critic of the current administration, Wilson is ready to back anyone who can defeat the current president in 2020. The author recognizes this is an uphill battle but in this book he outlines his state-by-state strategy (as well as landing a few well-crafted zingers against the current administration).

Wilson’s acerbic style may not be for everyone, but if yo
...more
Kevin
Aug 14, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
Let's get this out of the way: Rick Wilson is an asshole. But he's a funny asshole and he's super savvy about the GOP Playbook and how/what the Democrats need to do in order to avoid a repeat of the 2016 election. Every Democrat, and I mean every one of us, should read this book before the Fall. You'll rethink that Tweet or that whine for your pet project and put the focus where it needs to be: getting Trump and his wannabe kleptocracy and cronies out of office and on trial for their graft and c ...more
Heather
Apr 08, 2020 rated it liked it
On one hand it is very helpful to hear a GOP analysis of how both parties campaign. On the other hand, it makes me lose faith in society (or at least politics). Ultimately, Wilson is angry and it comes across and flagrant and unnecessary at times. But that’s also his point. Will be interested if he submits an “How to Campaign in a Pandemic Addendum" ...more
Mike Davis
May 24, 2020 rated it did not like it
Insulting, lazy, patronising rubbish.
Nena
May 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
A great follow-up to his first novel and very informative. My personal opinion (although I consider myself a moderate Democrat, I can relate to some of the principals of the Never Trump Republicans and admire them very much for their stance on upholding the rule of law and the Constitution and their fearless courage in standing up against Donald Trump) : I find myself shaking my head in huge disappointment at the Democratic Party who seem to be always one step behind Trump and his Trumpism Washi ...more
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Rick Wilson spent 30 years as a Republican ad-makers, political strategist and campaign consultant helping elect conservatives across America. In 2015, Rick was one of the founders of the Never Trump movement. He's a contributor to The Daily Beast, Rolling Stone, and The New York Daily News and a frequent guest on CNN, MSNBC, and the networks. ...more

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“The Party of Lincoln is now the Party of Trump, a weak, cowardly, amoral, and faithless husk of a once-great party of ideas and leadership. They’ll follow him into a political graveyard, red hats, tawdry nationalism, dumb policies, cruel tweets, and all. Their cult-like obedience to him has consumed their honor, and their souls.” 2 likes
“Trump is a complete package of the Founders’ greatest fears—delusions of royalty, appeals to the basest appetites of the polity, populism over small-r republicanism, and vulnerability to the blandishments of foreign powers who so obviously are welcome to corrupt him with gifts or flattery of his ravenous ego.

To date, his actions have had the possible check of the 2020 election hanging over him, which has influenced him whether or not he admits it. Trump needs to win reelection to continue his nation-state level, god-tier grifting and to avoid prosecution.

He thrives not on a competition of ideas but on the division of the country. Our parties and politics will follow him down, fighting a dirtier, more savage battle until we’ve forgotten what it means to share even the most common baseline with our fellow Americans. The cold civil war is warming by the day. He’s not the only centrifugal political force, but he’s the most powerful.

This will only accelerate if he is reelected. There will be no end to his ambition and no check on his actions. He will conclude that he’s the winner who wins, and for him that will justify everything in his catalog of errors and terrors. We’ve learned there is no bottom with Trump, no level to which he won’t sink, no excess he won’t embrace.”
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