Thursday, January 10, 2008

And yet more politics...

We would all like to be conscientious voters, to follow every debate and speech, to carefully research each candidate and learn their platform and positions. But most people don't, and with 8 Republicans and 5 Democrats (Bill Richardson is dropping out today) who could blame them for not being able to keep up? What we really need is for someone to wade through all the speeches, press releases and news stories to synthesize each candidate bio into a digestible piece of information. And by golly, Mark Halperin has done just that! A political analyst for Time and ABC News, Halperin has just published The Undecided Voter's Guide to the Next President: who the candidates are, where they come from, and how you can choose. The chapter for each candidate begins with a brief resumé and where they stand on 14 major voting issues. Halperin includes quotes from the candidate and indicates how important that particular issue is for them. He then follows up with a summary of the ups and downs of their career, an introduction to their spouse (and the particular assets and liabilities the spouse brings to the campaign), and areas of potential controversy. He lists why each candidate can win a general election, and why each one can't (an important analysis, since this primary season seems to be all about electability). He finishes off by telling you what to expect if they become President, including a best case and a worst case scenario, and a collection of quotes by and about the candidate. He even includes a bibliography for each person. Wow! If you're a registered voter, you need to check this book out before November.

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