Two Texas television correspondents trace the career of Rove, now White House Senior Advisor, and how he transformed George W. Bush into a viable candidate for the US presidency. Annotation (c)2003 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
The complete subordination of public policy to political calculation is the theme of this hard-hitting biography of |ber-advisor Karl Rove. Drawing on their own reporting and interviews with Rove friends and foes, journalists Moore and Slater trace Rove's rise from high-school pol to high-priced, bare-knuckled campaign consultant, to his current perch as unrivaled architect of Bush administration policy. With an uncanny head for voting trends and poll results, a masterful way with a donor list and a gift for political re-packaging, Rove groomed Bush to ride the compassionate conservatism strategy straight to the White House. It's a colorful story, full of dirty tricks, misleading attack ads and sleazy whispering campaigns that drown out the issues. To the authors, Rove's "co-presidency" marks "the apotheosis of the permanent campaign," with everything from farm subsidies to steel tariffs to the saber-rattling against Iraq a part of his carefully considered mid-term election plans. The authors' line on Rove is by now conventional wisdom, but they bring it to life with a wealth of detail, painting nuanced character studies of Rove, the driven intellectual with an abrasive edge and an iron will to win, and Bush, the callow anti-intellectual with a charming air and a need for discipline and a game plan. Rove may not be the "genius" behind Bush's election they say he is-after all, there was more than campaign wizardry at work behind that contested victory-but he is a compelling character on the American political stage. (Mar.) Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.