Claire McCaskill reads her unapologetic memoir of how she went from Missouri mom to become the state's first female senator by embracing her ambition, surviving sexists' slings, outsmarting her enemies, and finding joy along the way.
Claire McCaskill grew up in a political family but not at a time that welcomed women with big plans. She earned a law degree and paid her way through school by working as a waitress. By 1982 Claire had set her sights on the Missouri House of Representatives. Typically, one voter whose door she knocked on said: "You're too young; your hair is too long; you're a girl.... Go find yourself a husband." That door was slammed in her face, but Claire always kept pushing - first as a prosecutor of arsonists and rapists and then all the way to the door of a cabal of Missouri politicians that had secret meetings to block her legislation.
In this candid, lively, and forthright memoir, Senator McCaskill describes her uphill battle to become who she is today, from her failed first marriage to a Kansas City car dealer - the father of her three children - to her current relationship with a Missouri businessman, whom she describes as "a life partner". She reveals every aspect of her ups and downs with Bill and Hillary Clinton and her decision to endorse Barack Obama's candidacy. It was her daughter, Maddie, who put Claire on the spot at a time when Claire wasn't sure what to do.
From the day she was elected homecoming queen in high school to her long-shot reelection as senator after secretly helping to nominate a right-wing extremist as her opponent, Claire has loved politics and winning. Her memoir is unconventional: unsparing in its honesty, full of sharp humor and practical wisdom, and rousing in its defense of female ambition.
©2015 Senator Claire McCaskill, all rights reserved. (P)2015 Simon & Schuster
I am an avid eclectic reader.
I saw an interview on T. V. with Senator McCaskill discussing how she is investigating and analyzing the Iran Treaty. I was impressed at how she was educating herself about the treaty and the various other options available. So I decided to buy her book and read about her.
I discovered she is the first woman Senator from Missouri. She tells about her early life and her education. She earned a law degree and worked her way through school by working as a waitress. She worked as prosecutor and after some attempts was finally elected to the Missouri State House of Representatives. McCaskill tells in detail her failed campaign run for Governor of Missouri. She says that being Governor was her goal since age 8; she goes on to tell about what she did right and wrong in her campaign attempt. She was encouraged to run for Senator from Missouri by the Democratic Party. She says she put into practice in this campaign what she had learned from the failed attempt for Governor. McCaskill discusses her political life and her various campaigns and opponents. She also briefly touches on her personal life.
I was very interested in her life as a Senator and her interactions with the other women Senators. She discussed Hilary Clinton telling how hard working she was and that she was just one of the girls. I was interested in her view of the debate about sexual abuse in the Military. McCaskill served on the committee chaired by Kirsten Gillibrand and the various “Military Code of Justice” laws they got changed or added. She spoke about many of the women Senators she worked with and how well they all worked together without regard to their party affiliations.
The goal of the book is to encourage young women to run for political office. She would like to have at least sixty women in the Senate. The book is easy to read and provides an inside view of the life of a women politician.
I heard Senator McCaskill being interviewed on Deep & Shallow and found her to be engaging and funny and pretty darn smart! Listening to that interview made me want to learn more. The life she's led is full of ups and downs and the book gives plenty of examples of how she achieved the ups and persevered through the downs and learned lessons from both. I'm not from Missouri but I'd vote for her if I was!
"An important and exciting book"
Loved this for a number of different reasons. Claire speaks about her family with such fondness, her public service with such dedication and her elections with such excitement that it's impossible not to feel part of it.
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