Joe Scarborough - former Republican congressman and the always insightful host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe - takes a nuanced and surprising look at the unexpected rise and self-inflicted fall of the Republican Party. Dominant in national politics for forty years under the influence of the conservative but pragmatic leadership of Dwight Eisenhower and Ronald Reagan, the GOP, Scarborough argues, is in a self-inflicted eclipse. The only way forward? Recover the principled realism of the giants who led the party to greatness.
In the aftermath of Lyndon Johnson’s 1964 landslide, the Republican Party appeared to be on the verge of permanent irrelevance. LBJ’s Great Society was institutionalizing sweeping liberal reforms, and the United States had a thriving, prosperous economy. Yet in an instant everything changed, and the next four decades would witness an unprecedented era of Republican ascendancy. What happened?
In The Right Path, Joe Scarborough looks back in time to discern how Republicans once dominated American public life. From Eisenhower’s refusal to let “the perfect be the enemy of the good” to Reagan’s charismatic but resolutely practical genius, Scarborough shows how principled pragmatism, combined with a commitment to core conservative values, led to victory after victory.
Now, however, political incalcitrance is threatening to turn a once-mighty party into a permanent minority.