Starred Review. Republican campaign advisor Raymond achieved some notoriety when he plead guilty in federal court to jamming Connecticut phone lines in a 2002 Democratic get-out-the-vote effort-small potatoes compared to what he had gotten away with for more than a decade, vividly and hilariously chronicled in this outrageous career retrospective. For 13 years, Raymond worked his way up the ranks of GOP operatives by smearing opponents and worse in campaigns across the country, including the aborted presidential bid of Steve Forbes. Besides documenting such ingenious strategies as arranging for phone calls during the Super Bowl touting his candidate's opponent, Raymond witnesses the Republican party's rise to power in the 1990s, and the effects of that power, in both professional and personal terms. ("Bill Martini's screaming fits were reaching exciting new heights all the time.") Though Raymond appreciates the depravity of his former enterprise ("if you could find two of us Republican operatives who could still tell the difference between politics and crime, you could probably have rubbed us together for fire as well"), his confession often sounds a lot like boasting; naturally, Raymond is charming enough to get away with it, taking a deliciously cynical view of everyone involved (voters especially). For those who care about the electoral system, this look inside the sausage factory of contemporary campaigning is compelling, arguably essential, reading.
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"For those who care about the electoral system, this look inside the sausage factory of contemporary campaigning is compelling, arguably essential, reading." -- Publishers Weekly
"Refreshingly candid about his vindictive motives, Raymond offers a damning chronicle of political hubris." -- Kirkus Reviews
"Paints a picture of the corruption of modern politics that should leave no doubt about the creativity and cynicism of operatives like Mr. Raymond or the need for tough new election-reform legislation." -- Adam Cohen, The New York Times
"Offers a raw, inside glimpse of the phone scandal as it unraveled and of a ruthless world in which political operatives seek to win at all costs." -- McClatchy News Service
"Raymond offers an insider's look at the world of dirty campaigning and hardball politics. [A]n engaging read...the book is hard to put down." -- Nathaniel French, St. Petersburg Times