tv After Words CSPAN November 25, 2016 12:00pm-1:01pm EST
thousands of copies of a book, when you just need to upload it, basically, it can be almost instantaneous. the real work was the research and the actual writing. we went through a few rounds of editing. when it was done, it was almost push a button and it was live. >> have you thought about an expert? >> i have, i'm trying to decide whether or not i want to do another e-book or a full-length book. i've written a novel so i'm wondering about another novel, but i'm not at work at anything at the moment. >> john miller, director of the the journalism program at hillsdale national correspondent for the national review and author of the e-book available on kindle. the polygamist king. this is book tv on c-span2. >> cspan, where history history unfolds daily.
in 1979, c-span was created as a public service by america's cable television companies. it is brought to today by your cable or satellite provider. face the nation's john dickerson is next on the tvs "after words" program. his book, book, discusses memorable moments of past presidential campaigns. >> thank you so much for being with us today. i've been looking forward to this. you've written a great book. >> thank you. i'm looking forward to it. >> i'd like to set a theme here. he said in one race there's usually a neck or to the pass which gives you a guide to what might happen. i'm wondering it during this current campaign season, as you look over past races that you've written about, what do you think is most relevant or compares most closely with what's going
on. >> there are vents where it started which is that every one of the races that i have covered, you're just trying to see what's coming next and what to keep your eye out for. as you know there's so much false information up there so you go back and you looking you think okay, maybe this will come next. i think, a bunch of different races, going all the way back to 1824, when andrew jackson ran, he was an outsider the way donald trump was. they worry about him being a demigod demagogue not because he was a reality tv show but he was a reality star who had been a general. there is great worry that investing all of the hopes and dreams of the electorate in this one general, because he was flamboyant and successful would take democracy off its mark because people would think that you could do it all in one person. when donald trump says i along can do it, he's very much playing into that same fear about jackson. if you go back to 1964, the
coldwater movement was very similar. it was equally as successful. in 1968, george wallace ran as a third-party candidate and he's playing on the same resentments that donald trump is playing on and he was considered a joke at first the way many people did donald trump. and so, he change the race, even though he didn't win, change win, change the conversation of the race in a way that donald trump has. those are three races that are just in this book. i feel like we could find a lot. it's funny because honestly donald trump is also completely his own kind of creator. we have never had, we've had businessmen but never a marketer which is really what trump is running for the presidency. never somebody who flew his own plane over stadium so he's obviously, it's a new thing, but there are some parallels out there in history. >> some would say marketer, some would say con man but they've
said the same thing about past candidates and their personality. >> i think that's right. i think the standard now though, and we can dated back if we want to, jack kennedy, the first first television president in 1960, although warren harding's race was kind of the beginning of advertising techniques to sell candidates like soap which was the beginning of the idea that canada is being sold for their aura, but it seems like i have a jackson fixation, but the reason jackson got into the race was in part because the tennessee democratic republicans wanted a name people would know at the top of the ticket. back then there is a piece of cloth paper. if you knew that guide he was famous, you would vote the whole ticket. who knew who the other people wear. that was the point. have a kind of celebrity at the
>> he would say to his audiences whether he was in virginia or alabama, he would say they, meaning the elite, have looked, have looked down on us, us being anybody from the south, and were not going to let him do it anymore. really making a regional identification. that's one reason. the johnson and the democrats weren't unhappy. they thought they would let wallace do his work down in down in the south entiat richard nixon who will have to worry about competing for votes with wallace and that will pin them down but what got humphrey nervous was that in the north, the suburbanites who were worried about the riots in the city and the growth of the afghan american population, they started to hone in on or listen to the message. they weren't in for the full segregation, but it got to them through those same similar channels. when democrats are union voters in the midwest starting to be appealed to buy wallace, they started to get really nervous and not the way donald trump, as you say, a new yorker to the
bone, is suddenly playing in precincts you wouldn't guess when you first heard him talk. >> after reading your book i realized how well jackson fits into that. i had never thought of donald trump as a jacksonian, but in many ways there are similarities jackson was oh war hero. [inaudible] jackson was the first populace. in the end, she didn't have to fight the final battle. in 1824, there's essentially one party. there's one party, the democratic republicans, federalists were federalist were pretty much shot after the war of 1812.
the way to pick their party was a caucus. the representatives of the party would pick the nominee and because there was only one party, whoever the nominee was meant that would be the president. jackson's and others revolted against that in much the way trump revolted against, remember when we all middle number 1237. 237. that was the number of delegates he had to get. when it seemed like for a moment he might not get those, trump said the system is rigged, the people should be making the choice, not the delegates, will that's the same thing jackson was saying pretty was saying that people should make the choice, not this king caucus. while not this king caucus. walking caucus went ahead anyway. the nominated william crawford, secretary of state who was feeble and blind nominated him nonetheless. this was the last time i had a caucus because this was just a game for insiders to pick someone, not based on merit, because crawford was so ill, and
was based on the wire pullers. he basically becomes the people's candidate and that's the first time, the first populace, there was a long line of candidates afterward to try to do a version of the same thing. there is a add that was ran in texas because ford had been pacing for reg and for much that race until reagan wins in north
carolina and then they face off in texas. i've been a life long democrat and republican in texas, that person was the head of the wallace campaign in texas. he started off as a wallace democrat and reagan's victory in texas, basically gave him the boost that allowed him to go on to the convention and 76 and challenge for. >> there you go. you go to a different region. you were talking about jfk and west virginia and the coal mining area that was so important. your book is not an chronicle logical order. there are seven parts which you focus on particular themes and
jfk and west virginia race is under that chapter inflection point he hired a pollster and put them on the payroll and worked him. >> if i get my numbers right there was something like 5000 members of political consultant associations in 1960 and 60 and by 1980 was somewhere around 50000 -- 15000. anyway, big role for jfk.
he thought he would do wellin west virginia but the real story starts in wisconsin where he lives in wisconsin but it's a total hollow victory because he's catholic and he's framed by the press as a catholic victory. here you have kennedy trying to say i'm in a go out and prove myself primary and prove my mettle and my connection with the voters in its being frame not as proof of his talents but that people vote by the religion and the republicans crossing over to vote in the republican primary just because of his faith. it got so bad that the kennedy brothers fatwa cbs news on election night because they were talking to the alice on the show about the catholic question and the kennedys called up and said stop it. stop talking about this. it's a victory for the catholic candidate.
the papers the next day said sure he won but it was just a catholic thing so his whole effort to build his prestige during the primaries was completely undercut. he had a good west virginia to prove that he could win against humphries. one woman interviewed by teddy white said of course you should have a catholic president. if they wanted a catholic president they would've put it in the constitution. i think there were four or five of the state that was catholic, but there was a real bias against the catholics. by going into west virginia, he originally tried to run away from the catholic questions. i don't want talk of my religion, what's more important are my policies. midway through, through, he realized that wasn't working. he took it head-on and address that in a way he later was during general election with the famous speech to the baptist ministers. by winning in west virginia, he canna put away humphrey. that was good for him, but he
also said that a catholic couldn't win outside of the catholic enclave like wisconsin. >> were talking earlier about iowa. >> it would've been a real game changer. >> you're exactly right. as i was in thinking through, the whole book came out of this podcast that i do in the podcast must continue, even though i guess we are getting new stories for the second volume. what i'm working on right now, obama's victory in iowa in 2008. you are exactly right. it was years and years of inexperience. first-term senator, inexperience. first-term senator, no executive experience, using the primary caucus process and axelrod writes about this in his book believer, you build your prestige in the contest so people start to see u.s. presidential, even though you've never had any executive experience in your life at all. in iowa, he not only one in
iowa, a state that is basically a white state for all intents and purposes, but was able, by doing that and overcoming hillary clinton with all of her advantages, he was able to see you see, i can put together something in this place that's not friendly territory to me. it's exactly like like living in west virginia for kennedy. >> by the way, he was also black right. it's one thing to win in iowa than if you one in district of columbia. >> exactly. you want i thought this was intriguing. it brought back memories when i was 12 or 13 years old, living in middletown ohio and i watch the debates on tv. i would later work for them but that's another conversation.
richard nixon came to town and i got to go out and see him on the back of the train with about 45000 people. >> clinton did one and obama did one, i think he did one on the way to the convention, i remember riding on a train on the obama campaign or the big memory i had is that was a time in the campaign, one of the whistle stops he did was during the primaries because, maybe you did it on the way to inauguration. anyway.
[inaudible] during the primaries it was when they were taken on hillary clinton for having fabricated the story about the snipers in bosnia. i remember they put together an impromptu talk, a press phone call while we were on the train, trying to hit hillary clinton on that point. i know at least it was them. i feel like we're going through pennsylvania during the primaries. it's basically a huge gimmick now. there is no practical reason i can think of it other than you do get a chance to touch some rule areas. when truman, who i write about in 1948, they were going through these towns to show him he cared and he was masterful at it and had the first research that would tell him before he came to
town you're going to pocatello. the important thing to know is xyz and then he would talk about that in the people there would think well, this president for they think they don't care about us, he actually knows about it. the way he behaved seemed like hey, he's one of us. he is a hard-working guy full of great and he's okay. conjuring that, when you go through a rural area, isn't, isn't bad. even though now everything you do, whether it's in a closet it's on television everywhere and it might as well be in the middle of new york city. paying attention to people who live outside the big cities, you might get a little something for that in these days. >> speaking of german, my newspaper declared him to be the loser, some of our great historic moments, but you made a larger.
i will try to quote you, what we elites are not very good about predicting. >> that's one of the constant stories throughout. one back to jackson, he thought he's not in this for himself, he doesn't doesn't want to run to be president. even his friends thought he was in a way just to steal votes to help john quincy adams, which in the end they would be in a neck and neck race decided by the house. they got it wrong in 1824 but what's so fun is in september, elmer roper, the poster basically said nobody has lost two is this far ahead. he's ahead so when i can do anymore pulling. they didn't and, that was in september,. i don't know how far ahead he was, and then the series and
surveys that were done on the news man of the day, all all of them saying that dewey was going to win. they all wrote about who would be in the dewey cabinet and the columnist, the most fun with a columnist who wrote on monday to be published on wednesday with election day tuesday falling in between. there was so confident that they would win on tuesday that they were writing stories about his administration and so forth and so on that would be printed on wednesday. there is a great line that said mr. pres., the only only question for the press now is
how do you like your. [inaudible] there was another line, mr. president we are we are ready to eat crow whenever you are willing to serve it. tom broke brokaw said after the elections when some of the networks called the race for out gore, he said we don't just have egg on our face, we have an entire online. >> thank you. the chicago daily tribune was not alone in its crystal ball. >> it was primitive than. >> yes. it was primitive and it didn't get out into the precincts. even now you can be in error, one is an error of arrogance the
way we measure it that's why new surprises us. that's why there's so much of it one word pops up repeatedly in your book and it's the word expectations. that's what it's all about. that's what we do as journalists. we cover that which surprises you, good or bad, and we often get surprised ourselves. >> absolutely. then, this is not where we come into our finest moment which is, we cover what surprises us, and then write about our surprise as if that's news. the problem there is, in rolling the foundation for a campaign based on the surprise about an inaccurate assessment. it has something to do with it candidate and you think about,
there are so many of them. 1972, must win in iowa but he does better than expected so john apple mcgovern did better than expected. then it goes on in new hampshire and he wins again but mcgovern did better than expected and then the government wins because muskie can't meet expectations. when he didn't get about 50% of the vote, she said it's a total nightmare. she embraced the expectation. in other words, there is something real about what a campaign expects to do, and if they don't meet their mark, that means the voters are not as enthusiastic as the candidate as we may all have thought. 84, hart does better. mondale wins in iowa but heart does better than expected so that the causes trouble for mondale. the stories go on and on. we're talking about iowa in 2008. hillary clinton's the front runner.
she has more money and she's expected to do wellin iowa. she comes in third period behind edwards. howard dean was supposed to be the democratic nominee and was on the front of both of the newsmagazines, the major ones of the time, sorry, sorry u.s. news, but time and newsweek had her on the cover, excuse me had howard dean on the cover and then he comes in third with 18% of the the vote in iowa and that's a huge loss because of where expectations were. clinton rises in new hampshire and 92. >> they were in the basement and yet he elevated them but he turns a second place finish into a launching pad for the presidency. >> using the term comeback kid. i'm the comeback kid. another chapter in the book. >> while it's funny too because usually somebody gives themselves their own nickname, it's like a sean. you to earn a nickname. you know you have to be, to not
only have turned, but it sort of fits nicely because here you have a second place finish being turned into a great victory which is a sleight-of-hand. >> everyone have some fun. as people who one new hampshire 92. almost everybody, either bill clinton or they don't remember. paul who won that race got so forgotten after that, it was remarkable. it shows you, i haven't seen such an effective page turner until donald trump. lion ted, crooked hillary, blah, blah blah, it's child schoolyard game, but it works. somebody said once he said that jeb bush was low-energy. it sounded like nonsense but his numbers are lower after that. he seemed to lose some of that energy. >> that's the talent of the
marketer. knowing how to land something in an expectation, not an expectation but a ready-made, well, let's back up and what do marketers do, they introduce people to a need a need that is not before know they had. now, i don't know that i need to be punched in the face. there is some talent in that. it's not just you didn't a need you didn't know you had, but once you realize that you need it. there's an art to the spirit it's not just the fact that it's not something people are expecting the way they wouldn't be expecting a punch in the face. he has that marketers skill for doing that, and what makes the electorate nervous or people who study the electorate is the idea that a person can win the presidency basically based on the same kind of sleight-of-hand that goes into marketing, and that people used to think, it's funny when you look at the
political analysis pre-1960 where political scientist at the voters and said well what they do as they make a rational choice. they look at candidates and positions and i think how can i maximize my value in life for the country or whatever, but they kind of do a math problem and they come up with the sum at the end of whatever that total is, that's how they vote. then in the 60s they realized you know what, it turns out a motion plays a huge role that people project things onto candidates i have more more to do about their emotional feelings in life so it's not an active reason, it's an act of emotion. for some people that is frightening. >> i'm recalling how stevenson, back back when eisenhower, as you mentioned, they had the first. >> it's very funny to watch those on youtube. those statements of i will not be marketed like a box of soap.
he might've changed his mind had he realized how powerful tv was at the time. >> in general, the book about the mixing campaign, the president has a picture of nixon on the front as a box of cigarettes. it was marketed like a product, and i said, that started, or one was with harding so that goes way way back. >> harding was the beginning of the radio area. >> yes in the chicago ad man. this is all chicago's fault. the chicago style of advertising moved into the presidential campaign. that's a whistle stop that hasn't been done yet, but it's a great beginning of the story of how candidates were sold like soap.
of course, we should mention that until 1840, and then even well that even well after that, any candidate who participated themselves in a campaign, let alone being sold by soap, you weren't supposed to participate in it because it showed you lacked virtue for the office. it meant that you wanted to elevate yourself and that isn't why should want to be president, to elevate your station, but to help the country. >> that tone is remarkable to me how well a campaign eisenhower did. he would never win the primaries. >> no dummy, he was smart. when you think about the modern equivalent, eisenhower is the only one i can think of, unless there is some fantastic example that i'm missing. >> i think he's said. >> yet, where literally he carried them by the populace, the minnesota primarily where
they call it the minnesota miracle and there were so many misspellings of eisenhower, but nevertheless, they wrote in and got him and he won as a result of that popular uprising for him we haven't really seen anything, they were both out of the blue candidate like that. the artist we had a pretty good resume. >> it was also a wonderful campaign going on. >> at a time when people weren't really restricted to democrat or republican. they figured he would be a vote magnet and that was automatic madison square rally. >> exactly, and wonderfully used the come on ike, join the race which was affecting his credentials but it was a campaign itself. got voters interested. :
if you are not actually running the way eisenhower was, nobody could be upset at dallas cast great template was eisenhower was all things to all people. he was just a golden vessel into which people could pour their dreams. >> host: that's what i told people in your book. when people asked him, what do you believe in? he referred them to his speeches.
wonderful collections of mush that neither side could be offended by. >> guest: motherhood is good. as dewey said the future is ahead of us. >> host: best leadership. but helps to be a war hero. >> guest: it really helps to be a war hero. although what's interesting is his become commander of nato and that is a huge foreign policy debate at the time. his military expertise, you know, he was a hero without question but a nato peace was a little sticky within the republican party where there was a debate over whether nato should does, whether the comments threat was in europe or in asia. in that sense of military career had a little bit of a mild downside to it which, and this is a part of the story i don't tell and i don't know wes will be the last minute when it was clear path was going to lose, there's an emergency draft --
taft -- movement that goes on. macarthur's flirtations over time with the presidency and then to play on the same hero stature. of course, macarthur had a much bumpier situation having been fired by truman. and the republican primary that was just fine. that was another parallel story going on. >> host: there are so many. i would be remiss if i didn't ask you about yourself because everybody knows you anyway. as i said it's a quite interview, a professional interviewer who is seasoned at this. you reference your mom in the book. tell the folks ago remember, tell us about who your mom was.
>> guest: she was i guess the first newswoman correspondent for cbs news. there were not many women on tv at the time and she also then when she is on the air in 1960 and the first woman on afford to report from the floor of the convention, that was back when conventions meant something. there was real excitement and things going on. so she was a woman in a man's world. she was at cbs for eight years before the ever letter on the air. she kept asking and they kept telling her no. she loved the hill. she started waiting for the senate foreign relations committee. our first job was essential as a book or. she said would you please come under review programs or tv program. one of th the tv programs she worked on before she worked on before shahzad here with "face the nation." she helped get joe mccarthy who was at the time in the middle of being tried or about to be censured by the senate and went on face the nation and said
this is called a senate inquiry into his behavior. all of the senators who are unhappy with joe mccarthy at the time were ever more so because he was saying basically this is a kangaroo court, it has no legitimacy. she then worked for cbs and then in 1963 went over to nbc right before the shooting in dallas when john f. kennedy was killed and she' she's been very close o lyndon johnson when she was on the hill. he liked her, and so when she went over to nbc, suddenly there's a new president. she was one of his favorite reporters. she covered them a lot and then finish with nbc in 73 and went on to make documentaries. all this happened, much of it happened before i was born so i
wrote a book about her life because she left the everything has shed about 40 of those long lawyers boxes of everything including, the reason i write about in here is a lot of those old books, scott, pennsylvania moderate, moderate part of the stop goldwater movement. also turned eisenhower to run in the race. he has a great book about called come to the party about the republican party and the challenges in the moderate and conservative wings. he was a proud member of it. a great book but it was one that he signed to mom back when she was covering it. there's a bunch of those books, all the taft books about senator taft all from our library. there's one that stephen shadegg wrote about barry goldwater in which the subhead of the book is freedom is his flight plan. goldwater was the pilot and
shattuck was the longtime campaign manager, the father of congressman john shadegg who has been in congress. i kept bumping into monsters you when i was writing this book but the previous one i wrote 10 years ago was about her life because so much of it took place before i was either not on the planet are old enough to understand what it all meant. i spent a lot of time with her since she passed away in 97 through the presence of writing. >> host: raising a child in washington in this media saturated out and all that could be an interesting challenge in itself and essentially to zero to respond. even if the child wants to be like his or her parent or wants to get as far from journalism or whatever and they can't. how about you? >> guest: i was in both camps. part of the book my story with her as we had a very rough relationship between about when i was 14 and my parents divorced and i went and lived with my dad
and tell others about 24, it was very wrong and, contributors on both sides. i was no picnic. >> host: a great time of life, isn't it transferred its surprising how much i knew about everything. [talking over each other] just me but they age old in every respect. part of the book is about as needing to get our relationship when i started to be a reporter but if you told me a 14 i was going to go into our business i would've thought you were crazy. it's a funny kind of fact that not only did i go into the business but now after being in print for 25 years i switched over to being in television.
>> host: what changed your mind about journalism? >> guest: i wanted to tell stories. i only sort of figured this out after she died when i was actually writing her eulogy, which so i loved american history and literature. it's about stories. stores that are not just pleasant but tell us something and eliminate parts of either human character or the american character or the country as a whole. we pass on stories and have since the beginning of time because they use the entertainment value of the story to tell us something about ourselves and about our world. i love writers like joseph conrad who really try to tell a story and have gotten really essential truth. that's what i want to do in either studying literature or writing they had to get a job out of college thoughts is editor at time inc. it was right before the 92 race.
i've always loved politics going up in washington. i was interested in the, in campaigns in governing. then that's when those two stories came together. i got to be a longtime columnist for lifetime magazine, "time" magazine of the same kind of way covering, the way you write. it's about this stuff we love in the american condition and the story at the heart of politics. and so that just kind of, you know, got me going and becoming a reporter where you could, instead of looking at stories and books, you could go out and talk to people. i started covering all kinds of stuff before i really, the first campaign i covered was in 96. i had about four years of covering the baseball strike, wall street, the first attack on the world trade center.
i covered health stories. really it was a wonderful training of covering basically everything that was thrown every post i do you think growing up in washington is different than growing up in pasadena or st. louis, or for a kid coming of? >> guest: i think yes. probably not in any good way. i had an amazing number of advantages both in terms of where i went to school but also going up in this world. part of my job is to do with people who are in positions of power and that is intimidating and it can make you nervous, except when i was a little kid that's what i did. my parents used to entertain quite a lot and i used to be the one who opened the door to parties and would greet guests. i mean, when i was 12 i met ronald reagan at my house. so that's helpful because the
television is distorting. washington politics is distorting. in one sense i grew up in that distortion but on the other hand, i hopefully recognized part of it. and through a careful effort to migrate to spend time outside of washington and with politics the story is not in washington, has been helpful. if you come from the real world, that's probably better. and, in fact, when my mom wrote her autobiography the beginning is basically she came from wisconsin come out in the heartland. she was establishing her credentials because she'd come not from washington but from the country. very quickly about the third, in the book she goes washington and telling stories. when the book itself you see that tension between the real world and washington. for surely i got roots in different parts of the country so that helps balance of having grown up here.
>> host: outside the beltway, those of us who live in the beltway were quite surprised by the way this particular election is, longer every election surprises us, every campaign turn to the surprise in this election having spent so much time on the road covering campaigns and covering the movement that is now reporting donald trump, pat began in 1992 and a 96, and then when i covered him when he flirted with running in 97 on the way to running perhaps in 2000, and the tea party movement in 2010. the disappointment among grassroots movement. grassroots conservative slightly different than what we would've called movement conservatives. there's a bit of a clash these days, sort of as an example donald trump versus ted cruz. >> host: there some grassroots versus movement.
>> guest: these are loose distinctions but if you're in the movement he read the national review, you believe in a certain set of ideological principles that represent conservatism, smaller government, strong national defense, the three stools of his social conservatism as well, the three stools of the republican party that we used to talk about. there's a philosophical underpinning really, ambassador to ensure into your in the conservative movement. some tea party at here is a donald trump himself is not a movement conservative. he's not a conservative by his own admission. he will say as you said it's not called the conservative party. it's called the republican party which means the police are not at its core. it's just the name of the team and he is not a conservative. rush limbaugh was just saying the other day in response to donald trump's family leave policies and so forth, this is not a conservative.
donald trump -- excuse me, rush limbaugh is a fan. nevertheless has people have identified with the republican party, identified with conservatism but the more populist part of the conservative coalition, that was out there and we all have known that. >> host: go back to ross perot, or for that matter a lot of populist over time, at buchanan you mentioned. pat and donald trump are very close to pat feels very proud his date was carried over gaza by donald trump. at the grassroots folks are the ones we kind of, i used to call them a flash mob movement, popped up like a tea party did and now. we can be taken seriously now, don't we? >> guest: in 2010 you had you taken seriously. they were basically what caused barack obama so much trouble,
ended up leaving you could've argued to the election of republican senator of massachusetts which then changed the shape of the health care bill. so that today was something that come and they we saw in eric cantor's laws. we saw in john boehner getting bush out of office. we have seen this coming. what surprised me is that they would pick as their champion somebody like donald trump. i think this is where i may have gotten populist and a movement a little confused, a little, even though as i said i was aware of the differences. movement conservatives save essential problem with lawmakers, although this again, the central problem with these capitulating republicans that themade him so angry is that thy capitulated. they change their mind. they caved in under pressure. if that is the key criteria that you be consistent, donald trump,
that's not the way he behaves. in fact, his supporters now make his flex builder of all things everywhere a great attribute. that's the thing to me that, so people will say we always knew that grassroots tea party conservatives would say we want smaller government but don't touch our medicare and social security. so there was an inherent tension in the desire both for smaller government and an affection for its largest programs and how the. them -- entitled. finally, i would say that my view about this supremacy of staying true to your word was probably my overreading of all the conversations i've had out in the real country where people would say if they would just do what they promised they would do, if they would behave in private the way they, we would like to do.
if they would behave in public in a way that didn't the greater culture. a lot of things that a been said by voters that i've talked to say we want a president who says things out loud that we can be proud of have been, have kind of gone away. i probably in the way overvalued what was being said by voters rather than the way in which they ended up voting. >> host: the difference between what we say and think versus what we feel. i think the politics of feelings speaks lightly and flippantly but very seriously do. i look at donald trump, and the reason why, john, it's a sense of empathy i have because i see the excitement in the top supporters i've ever reminded of the obama campaign in '08 with the excitement that so many people had back then. including myself.
i was very excited and i could see them, you know, we were going to change, positive direction with what was going on. that's what these folks are saying. these are the folks i grew up. middletown, ohio, is in the spotlight now with hillbilly by jd events your he writes about a rust belt. this is the 50s, we have gone downhill economically. a lot of these people talking about when they say let's make america great again, they want to get that sense of security again and they believe in donald trump so well he is now vulnerable to all of our advancement with the truth, the facts. don't let facts get in my way. i want my guy in the white house. this is the same sort of thing aspect over the last several cycles, but increasing passion. people talk about of what the country that i grew up in all i
want things to go back to where you were. that is an economic message but also a cultural message. the pace of change. again though i feel like it brings me right back to 1997 being with pat buchanan in western pennsylvania in the steel town that, you know, they were on hard times. the closing down and the effects of manufacturing changing in automation at all the economic effects have been around for a while. but anyway this idea that we grew up with a certain set of promises that are being taken away from us and we want those back. we see that both specifically and places where donald trump is working hard ohio, western pennsylvania where they been specifically hard hit with closings and changing economical landscape. we also see in a kind of nostalgia for an older time that
takes hold among people are making over $100,000 a year and a basically benefiting. it's both a specific feeling that people have about the economic situation and one that's just much more general that does have any links to give people specific pocketbook concerns because they're doing okay. >> host: some of these themes pop up in your telling of history, and we go back to the jackson period, certainly the pat buchanan appeared. one thing we see these uprisings share in common is a sense of populist anger, discontent with the way things are going, a resentment towards elite, jackson didn't like the federal reserve. it was by a different name at the time but he shot it down and caused quite a bit of economic havoc a lot of folks felt like it was, well, something they wanted because they didn't trust
of those big bankers in east. >> guest: and they had good reason. the economic collapses that have resulted from the decisions of east coast bankers had ruined their lives out on the frontier. so why are you doing this to me? you people with your fancy theories that are ruining my life. that's clearly got to be a part of this card verse of populism which is the current recession which is essentially the result of this behavior by, pic picture elite, whether it's of the federal reserve board washington lawmakers or it's the mortgage-backed security hucksters. all our people whose bad decision-making savaged the lives of people who are not a part of the initial decisions that were made. when i'm reading about jackson and his feelings about the national bank, you really feel, it feels very, very modern in terms of the anger at people for
making economic decisions that are ruining your life. >> host: donald trump speeches to the language keeps coming back into the page of time. what does that say about the american character transferred its funny you mention donald trump and andrew jackson. andrew jackson said by their abuse they shall elect me, which is basically he was talking about the writers at the time, much the same way that donald trump plays off of and uses the traditional media as a foil and says, and benefits from when the "new york times" write something negative about him, that helps him with his constituency. there some his constituency. there some trickiness with the general electorate because there are some people who still trust what the "new york times" writes that in the electorate. so what does it say though about, i guess in one sense it's comforting to people who read the book because they think if
these kurds have always been there then they will work themselves out as we've seen them work himself up in the american story. that were these moments of crisis, 1824, the supposedly corrupt bargain that took place in order to get john quincy adams elected was, with henry clay, was you know, a crisis moment. people were absolute outraged. >> host: maybe because it had never happened before yesterday right. more outraged than when the supreme court decided for george bush in bush v. gore. the nation, the republic survive, continue to it gives hope for people, if it's okay it's going to be okay regardless of who's elected and for some people that means regardless if donald trump is elected or others who are so opposed to
hillary clinton can find solace in the idea that countries been able to work its way out in the past. i think what it says about the voters is basically the passions are always there and always ruling what's happening. this isn't an act of reason. voting is not an act of reason. that's what leads to the unpredictability your week i've always have to analyze it in a way that seems logical that been voters behave in ways that has more to do with the internal humor necessary than what's going on in the brain. >> host: accommodation all of those. how it elections opportunity for people to feel like they can have an impact on what the power structures affecting their lives. >> guest: right. >> host: there's a sense of betrayal in a lot of people's hearts right now about the way the elites have been treating them. >> guest: and by the way,
that's a healthy thing. it's not always that, the worry of course is that, there are two worries that the mob would be too big, two worries at the beginning of the american experience or experiment i should say. one was that we would have a king and that was a great worry. that the people would not have their say. and it was the opposite, the mob would have too much of a say. we try to bounce back and forth between that, those two things. it's not always the case emotions of the voters are wrong. sometimes they are a great corrective to the fancy theories of the people who have gotten so attenuated from the business of government and what it should be that they kind of lost the theme. a lot of people would say that's what reagan did, which was reset a federal government that had gotten off its mark. and he, through the emotional connection, kind of reset
things. >> host: reagan's life was interesting when you consider how he was doing commercials for, he looked like a spokesman for the goldwater campaign. i remember that speech that was replayed around the country at the time that raise his political profile. >> guest: time for choosing. he said he went to bed and was woken up by a call from the goldwater campaign saying, the figure 8 million sticks in my head. i don't know if that's right at the race at great deal of an offer that speech and that's where -- >> host: 8 million was a lot of money aspect back and bite you something. today can only teach a couple of great america hats. >> host: today's politics, tried to get revenge for the '60s still, one side or the other. >> guest: and people talk about it's really interesting to talk about wanting to get back to something. they are not talking to getting back to the 1960s. they're talking pre---
>> host: you think america went downhill after elvis presley appeared on the ed sullivan show 56 and he said things were pretty good back then. for you they were, pal. >> guest: exactly. that's the thing that's really interesting. the smithsonian african-american history of culture has just opened and i was there and did an interview with john lewis and was talking to about the pace of change, particularly those who think the pace of change has been too slow recently. i was standing there with john lewis who was looking at a picture of young john lewis, it's part of exhibit one is big on the steps of the lincoln memorial as part of the march on washington. julich is a picture and you look at john lewis extended and you figured in a museum he worked 15 years to get into existence, and you think there's the pace of change right there. there's now an african-american president. they had this museum exists.
>> host: something else in connection, john lewis was a young radical. there was a lot of concern about what he was going to say up on the podium, because he was really angry at jfk at that time and it was feared he would overshadow dr. king's speech. they talk to them and he went along with the program eventually. in recent years he's been a voice of reason, of moderation for both black and whites on both sides. time as had its impact. >> guest: in preparing for the interview and also his got the three comic books a part of his life and the march. >> host: and the crowd surf with stephen colbert. >> guest: that's yet another one. that comic book was one did read and he was beginning to be brought into the movement. ..
other than that, we don't hear as much about that special idea of non- violence which is leading our enemy and to hear lewis talk about that even when they are cracking his goal, that is really powerful in terms of his history in the world? host: so many of the people who were beaten or spat upon years ago have received apologies now from those still living and there has been so much reconciliation and i saw the si