An American Voter by Joan Sullivan
My Love Affair with Presidential Politics

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Synopsis

When Joan Sullivan was sixteen, her sister got married on their sprawling farm in New Jersey. Bill Bradley, the senator and former NBA player, was among the guests. Suddenly, magically, Joan found herself on the basketball court with him. An athlete herself, awed by his dedication to both sports and politics, she slipped off her shoes, bunched up her bridesmaid dress, and tried not to smile too brightly when he took her as a partner.Five years later, Sullivan is in Des Moines, Iowa, working feverishly for Bill Bradley's presidential campaign. Haunted by the death of her father and feeling disconnected from her life in New York, Joan throws herself into this strange new world, intent on getting a political education. In a whirlwind tour of the U.S., Joan campaigns for Bradley, taking to heart his message that idealism and dreams are not dead in America.But Joan is not immune to the perils of politics. In one embarrassing moment, she resorts to a shoving match with a Gore supporter in the streets of Brooklyn. But through her experiences, Joan discovers some larger truths: that defeat does not necessarily mean failure; that although Bradley will ultimately lose the campaign, she and others can continue to work for change; and that voting is more than participating in politics; it is a personal and powerful way to participate in life.
 

About Joan Sullivan

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Joan Sullivan lives in New York City and currently teaches at the Bronx School for Law, Government and Justice. She has appeared on the Evening News with Peter Jennings, and was filmed teaching her class about the Electoral College. She spent two years working for the New York City Civilian Complaint Review Board, the city agency which investigates police misconduct. She is a 1995 graduate of Yale College, where she majored in American Studies. This is her first book.
 
Published December 16, 2008 by Bloomsbury USA. 226 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences. Non-fiction

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Still, she displays in numerous places a fresh phrase, a sharp eye, and keen ear as she describes her undying affection for Bradley and her round-the-clock schedule of planning campaign events in unfamiliar Iowa, dealing with the hated media, skirmishing with a pushy Secret Service agent, eating ...

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The suspense is not in the outcome of the Gore-Bradley face-off, but in whether Sullivan's political idealism can survive the compromises, inanities and media cynicism — in short, the commercialization of the American political process.

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