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The Triumph of William McKinley Audiobook

The Triumph of William McKinley: Why the Election of 1896 Still Matters

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Publisher's Summary

From New York Times best-selling author and political mastermind Karl Rove comes a fresh look at President William McKinley, who found a message that healed his nation, pried his party away from its bosses, and extended its reach to forge a governing majority that lasted 30 years.

Many of the changes that the country experienced in 1896 match those of today: A rising immigrant population made traditional white Protestants a shrinking share of the electorate, an economic upheaval led to rising inequality, and there was little common ground between the two parties. McKinley's campaign found answers to many of these challenges, which is why it is so relevant to what ails our politics now.

A talented politician and reserved Ohioan, McKinley (called "The Major") changed the arc of American history by running the first truly modern presidential campaign. Knowing he didn't stand a chance with the GOP's traditional base of supporters, he did the unthinkable and reached out to diverse ethnic groups, including openly seeking the endorsement of Catholic Church leaders. Running on the slogan "The Man Against the Bosses", McKinley also took on the moneymen who controlled the party by doling out favors. He even deployed what we would consider modern tactics, including microtargeting voters with the use of the latest technology. Above all, he offered bold and controversial answers to the nation's most pressing challenge: how to make a new, more global economy work for everyone. And although he alienated factions within his party and longtime allies, he won the White House.

The 1896 election is a compelling drama in its own right, but McKinley's brilliant strategies offer important and powerful lessons for both political parties today.

©2015 Karl Rove (P)2015 Simon & Schuster

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  •  
    H. Brown 02-27-16
    H. Brown 02-27-16
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    "Understand Modern Presidential Campaigns"
    Would you listen to The Triumph of William McKinley again? Why?

    Yes. This book will reward a second reading since there is a lot of new background information about 19th Century politics that explains how McKinley was elected President.


    What other book might you compare The Triumph of William McKinley to and why?

    Any book from the "Making of a President" series.


    What three words best describe Karl Rove’s performance?

    Decent--no actor.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    No.


    Any additional comments?

    Readers who bring a contrary opinion about Rove to the reading of this book will not enjoy this book. I say lighten up! Rove understands how elections work and how to get a candidate elected to the highest state or national office. This book is written by one of the leading political campaign strategists today (the equal on the Democratic side is David Axelrod). Rove is not manipulating the reader; he is providing a reasonably objective account of McKinley the man, the politician and his campaigns for public office up to and including his Presidential campaign. The book is an account of how McKinley rose to the Presidency by examining the strategy of his successive campaigns. It provides a pretty good account of the competing 1896 campaigns, and explains why McKinley won. Most historians agree with Rove's conclusions about the campaign, but they cannot hope to write an account from the point of view of someone like Rove, who has actually successfully managed Presidential campaigns. Rove also explains why modern political campaigns are the active, aggressive, personal campaigns we are seeing today.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Troy J. 12-04-15
    Troy J. 12-04-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Not a very good book....falls flat!"
    Any additional comments?

    I enjoyed Mr. Rove's Courage and Consequence very much but this one is just simply quite bad. It is rambling, unorganized, flat, and incredibly boring. It is unfortunate because the William McKinley story is an interesting one, as are the political characters of his time.

    5 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeff Casurella Marietta, GA 03-22-16
    Jeff Casurella Marietta, GA 03-22-16 Member Since 2003

    Jeff

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    "Dull"

    I really wanted to like this book. I have enjoyed Karol Rove's analysis on television and I believe he sees things from an interesting perspective.

    But the history was dull, I gained no insights into McKinley as a man, and the narration--well, let's just say that the author needs to stick to his role in politics and not venture into something more suited for an actor.

    I do believe the work was well-researched, but it was just not "searching" enough into the mindsets of the day or what actually made McKinley tick. I do not recommend.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Guerin Shea Nashville, TN USA 12-12-15
    Guerin Shea Nashville, TN USA 12-12-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Just as important today as it was then."

    Just finished this tremendous book. I STRONGLY encourage my fellow Republicans to read it, for it is just as germane in 2016 as it was in 1896. This sentence from Rove encapsulated the message and method that President McKinley employed in his campaign:

    "Politics is a game of addition, but Bryant played subtraction and McKinley took advantage of it."

    Of course this is a very thinly veiled admonishment to all of us that if The Donald continues on the perilous path that he's on, we will wind up with another impeachable President Clinton.......

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    eclectic reader Fort Myers, FL USA 06-07-16
    eclectic reader Fort Myers, FL USA 06-07-16 Member Since 2015

    wanderer

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    "An interesting perspective on the turning off the 19th century"

    While Karl Rove comes with some partisan political credentials he certainly made an era I had known little about interesting. Not surprisingly he focuses a lot on the nuts and bolts of the campaigns organisation.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Dallas Georgia 06-03-16
    Dallas Georgia 06-03-16 Member Since 2008
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    "For History Buffs and Political Junkies"
    Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

    I would recommend this book to any history buff, or any political junkie. For most everyone else, it's a pretty long recap of McKinly and his life


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    HBS 05-05-16
    HBS 05-05-16
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    "Thanks Karl"

    Loved the book. Really interesting story that you never hear about and it's relevant today. The narration by the author was terrific. The TR accents were hilarious and a great addition.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Todd Thomas Olsen 03-31-16 Member Since 2013
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    "Great read and a window into the future of 2016."
    Would you listen to The Triumph of William McKinley again? Why?

    Absolutely. Inspiring, detailed and fascinating. If there's a book that peers into the future of this presidential election, this is it. I re-listened to several chapters because 1896 is such a great window into what is about to unfold between now and November.


    What did you like best about this story?

    It is great historical material, but Rove brings a really unique set of events to life.


    What about Karl Rove’s performance did you like?

    Not his impersonation of Theodore Roosevelt!! But it's worth it.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    McKinley outmaneuvering the combine, the political bosses, and forever reshaping the way presidential campaigns are run and won.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    terrill 11-30-15
    terrill 11-30-15 Member Since 2014
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    "political consultant handbook"
    What would have made The Triumph of William McKinley better?

    The book had no soul, no fire, nothing. The election of 1896 was a watershed election in America, yet I am not sure why Mr. Rove even wanted to write the story. It reads like a thesis for a doctorate in political science


    Has The Triumph of William McKinley turned you off from other books in this genre?

    yes, I had to force myself to finish and even to listen.


    What didn’t you like about Karl Rove’s performance?

    His voice is uneven and tiring. He shows much more emotion when he is on tv. It was as if he were tired of his topic


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from The Triumph of William McKinley?

    the book would need to be shortened to about a 30 minute short article. To make the book interesting would need to develop his characters


    Any additional comments?

    Sorry for such a harsh review Mr. Rove, but this book just did not work for me at all. Perhaps there are others who will, but for me i did not

    5 of 11 people found this review helpful

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