Man Who Ran Washington: The Life and Times of James A. Baker III


BEST BOOK OF THE YEAR: The New York Times - The Washington Post - Fortune - Bloomberg

From two of America's most revered political journalists comes the definitive biography of legendary White House chief of staff and secretary of state James A. Baker III: the man who ran Washington when Washington ran the world.

For a quarter century, from the end of Watergate to the aftermath of the Cold War, no Republican won the presidency or ran the White House without the advice of James Addison Baker III. A scion of Texas aristocracy who became George H. W. Bush's tennis partner, Baker had never worked in Washington until a devastating family tragedy struck when he was thirty-nine. Within a few years, he was leading Gerald Ford's campaign and would go on to manage a total of five presidential races and win a sixth for George W. Bush in a Florida recount. He ran Ronald Reagan's White House and became the most consequential secretary of state since Henry Kissinger. Ruthlessly partisan during campaign season, Baker became an indispensable dealmaker after the election. He negotiated with Democrats at home and Soviets abroad, rewrote the tax code, assembled the coalition that won the Gulf War, brokered the reunification of Germany, and helped bring a decades-long nuclear superpower standoff to an end.

Brilliantly crafted by Peter Baker of The New York Times and Susan Glasser of The New Yorker, The Man Who Ran Washington is a page-turning study in the acquisition, exercise, and preservation of power in late twentieth-century America and the story of Washington when Washington ran the world. Their masterly biography is necessary reading and destined to become a classic.