Bob Dole : American political phoenix /

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Bibliographic Details
Author / Creator:Hilton, Stanley G.
Imprint:Chicago : Contemporary Books, c1988.
Description:viii, 280 p., [8] p. of plates : ill. ; 24 cm.
Format: Print Book
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Hidden Bibliographic Details
ISBN:0809245612 : $18.95
Notes:Includes index.
Bibliography: p. 263-274.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

This unauthorized biography of one-time presidential contender Dole by a former Senate staff aide traces the rise of a small-town Kansas native from county attorney to congressman and powerful Senate minority leader, and recounts his abortive race for the Vice-Presidency in 1976 and Presidency in 1980. Fiercely ambitious, independent, a workaholic, Dole suffered a crippling war injury and rehabilitation prolonged by years of incompetent medical care that apparently strengthened his determination to establish his identity and power. Termed by some a political chameleon and opportunist, he has moderated his extreme conservatism, sought to shed the ``hatchetman'' image of his Nixon days and, with the influence of an equally pragmatic wife, has curbed his abrasive ways and caustic wit, according to Hilton. He has also risked antagonizing the Far Right by attacks on the budget deficit and big business abuses and by his advocacy of civil rights and programs for the poor and handicapped. With Dole now out of GOP presidential contention, this book's chance of success about equals the former candidate's. Photos not seen by PW. (May) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved
Review by Library Journal Review

A lawyer and former aide to Senator Dole, Hilton characterizes Dole by the statement, ``I fight; therefore, I am.'' He portrays Dole as an intense loner, bitter at being an outsider, but still consumed with becoming an insider. The ultimate expression of this is his presidential ambitions. Dole finds it difficult to express emotions; his marriage to Elizabeth is one of fierce competition and mutual political motivation. Yet Hilton points out that Dole is indecisive on controversial issues and credits Dole's wartime injuries as the source of his noted compassion for the less fortunate. The final chapter evaluates Dole as a possible president. While Dole may never become president, this book is an interesting interpretive biography, not merely a chronicle of Dole's life. See also Bob and Elizabeth Dole with Richard Norton Smith, The Doles, LJ 3/15/88. Mark K. Jones, Cincinnati, Ohio (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Review by Kirkus Book Review

A penetrating, balanced biography of Dole by an attorney who served some years on the Senator's staff. Hilton's portrait is of an inner-driven man, born to hard times in rural Kansas, sorely ambitious to make it to the top. What gave Dole's ambition added impetus were his WW II injuries (sustained only three weeks before V-E Day). which left his right arm just a limp extension. They had a lasting effect in two ways: by concentrating his ambition after a pall was cast over his ""wholeness,"" and--as a consequence of the shabby treatment he received from the Army (they refused to pay for his surgery, which was paid for finally via $1,800 drawn up by the hometown folk)--by propelling him into a populist variant of conservatism, Hilton is sharply critical of Dole's manic drive (his first marriage of 24 years failed, ultimately the victim of 19-hour workdays), as well as of his characteristic inability to give anybody a pat on the back (the most praise any staff member ever gets from Dole, states the author, is a ""Not bad--not good, but not bad""). Hilton's semi-psychobiography leads past Dole's second marriage to Elizabeth Hanaford (who matched his ambition, drive, intensity, and long work hours) to his current White House bid. Speculating on a Dole presidency, Hilton suggests that (borrowing James Barber's rating system) Dole would be an active-negative president in the vein of Johnson or Nixon, and would try to revamp the Republican Party along populist lines. ""Dole would not become an asterisk president. He would be a hands-on leader, very much in charge of everything. . ."" Timely commentary and much more biting than the Doles' own current, amiable autobiography (The Doles: Unlimited Partners, p. 33). Copyright ┬ęKirkus Reviews, used with permission.

Copyright (c) Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.
Review by Publisher's Weekly Review

Review by Library Journal Review

Review by Kirkus Book Review