The election of 2008 shattered political barriers, illuminated undercurrents of race, gender, and class, and ignited an extraordinary battle among some of the most formidable rivals ever to seek the presidency in Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, and John McCain. It was an election that played out against a backdrop of war, economic collapse, and deep pessimism about the future.
Dan Balz and Haynes Johnson followed this campaign from the candidates’ first forays into Iowa and New Hampshire to the historic night of Obama’s victory celebration. They offer behind-the-scenes details of turning points like the stunning endorsement of Obama by Senator Edward M. Kennedy. They probe the strategic mistakes of the Clinton campaign and the story behind Obama’s breakthrough organization. They cast in new light McCain’s struggle for survival in the Republican primaries, his selection of Sarah Palin as his running mate, and the economic meltdown that ensured Obama’s victory.
Exclusive interviews with the candidates and their top strategists produce intimate portraits of Obama, Clinton, and McCain under stress throughout the longest and most expensive presidential campaign in American history. Balz and Johnson also move far off the campaign trail to listen to voters in battleground states express their deep anxieties about the darkening economic climate and the challenges facing the United States. This audiobook is a riveting account of how this election not only marked a new era in American politics but also offered a test of historic proportions at a watershed moment for our nation.