Harold's Reviews > The Passage of Power

The Passage of Power by Robert A. Caro
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's review
Aug 01, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: biography, history

This is really three books rolled into one, but if Caro separated them he would be writing 7 books on Johnson.

The first portion is the nomination of Kennedy, the paltry challenge by Johnson, and then the surprise nomination of of Johnson for VP. The is peppered with the hate that Bobby Kennedy bore for Johnson, and visa versa.

Second is the vice presidential years. Caro tells the story of the Kennedy administration, from the point of view of the family dog, i.e. Johnson. Peppered with his hate for Bobby Kennedy, and visa versa.

Finally, the assassination of Kennedy and the triumphant ascension of Johnson, over the period from Kennedy's death until his state of the union speech the following January. During that period he passed the budget and the tax cut that Kennedy wanted (but couldn't pass) and then capped it off with the civil rights bill. It was a tour de force -- perhaps the most effective period in modern history of presidential leadership concerning legislation. And of course peppered with Bobby's Kennedy hatred for him.

A fascinating,instructive and compelling journey.

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Nathaniel Forgive if a certain presumption is necessary at this late , highly corporate, stage of "democracy". I think this book is bad, and has been favorably reviewed because it is so safe. Here is a dissenting view. I intend only to provoke democratic yaking, which is so difficult in today's completely corporate world, where all disagreement about what really matters is niched until the body politic is a corpse http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...

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