Do Not Ask What Good We Do : Inside the U. S. House of Representatives

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  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 4/24/2012
  • Publisher: Free Press

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From the author of the New York Times bestseller Dead Certain, the definitive book about the Bush Presidency, a revealing and riveting look at the new House of Representatives, elected in the history-making 2010 midterm elections.Held during President Obama’s first term in office, the 2010 midterm elections for the U.S. House of Representatives represented a seismic shift in the political climate. Elections were held for all 435 seats, and Republicans resumed control over the chamber that they had lost in 2006. Much of this was made possible by the “tea party” movement, which ushered eighty-seven Republican House freshmennearly half of whom were self-styled “citizen-politicians” who had never before held elective officeinto Washington, bent on rolling back the president’s entire agenda. As the Republican Party’s spear point against the Obama White House, the once-inconsequential “lower body” of the Legislative Branch would now become thoroughly relevant, and more raucous than ever. Draper chronicles the vicissitudes of the 112th Congress, from the arrival of the eighty-seven freshmen to the horrific shooting of Gabrielle Giffords to the hair-raising brinksmanship of the debt ceiling negotiations. The narrative that unfolds is replete with sound and fury and often as hilariously inconclusive as a Seinfeld episode. Draper tells it through the eyes and activities of several of its members, ultimately producing a newsworthy yet lasting portrait of the fragmented country that they all represent. In a nation beset by competing regional interests and dwindling existential security, Draper’s book boils down to a single haunting question: will the world’s most representative institution succeed in unifying America, or atomizing it? Praise for Robert Draper’s Dead Certain: “A shrewdly observed and very engagingly written exploration of the president’s enigmatic personality.” Los Angeles Times

Table of Contents

Cast of Charactersp. xiii
Prologue: Evening, January 20, 2009p. xv
Tea Party Freshmanp. 3
The Deanp. 11
Bayonetsp. 16
Shut'er Down
Citizens in the Devil's Cityp. 27
Gabbyp. 35
The Institutionalistp. 40
State of the Weinerp. 51
Madam Minority Leaderp. 58
Continuing Resolutionp. 69
Moment of Silencep. 98
Black Republican Out of Floridap. 105
Radicalizationp. 112
Woman of a Certain Ragep. 117
"You Hard Head"p. 126
"You Don't Know Where I'm Coming From!"
Draft Horsep. 155
The Winning Messagep. 164
Side Pockets on a Cowp. 171
"Here is Your Shield"p. 186
"Dropping Out of Things is What I Do"p. 193
"You Are Wronfp. 203
Coffee with Your Congressmanp. 215
The Hostagep. 222
Lower, Ever Lowerp. 266
Epilogue: Evening, January 24, 2012p. 283
Notesp. 289
Acknowledgmentsp. 303
Indexp. 307
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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