The Price of Politics by Bob Woodward

63%

11 Critic Reviews

Much of this story has already been told in lengthy articles in The New York Times Magazine by Matt Bai and in The Washington Post by Peter Wallsten, Lori Montgomery and Scott Wilson.
-NY Times

Synopsis

See how and why Washington is not functioning in Bob Woodward’s freshly reported, thirty-five-page Afterword to his national bestseller, The Price of Politics, which provides a detailed, often verbatim account of what happened in the dramatic “fiscal cliff” face-off at the end of 2012 between President Obama and the Republicans.

Now it’s happening again. In fall 2013, Washington faces a new round of budget and fiscal wars that could derail the American and global economies.

“We are primarily a blocking majority,” said Michael Sommers, Speaker John Boehner’s chief of staff, summarizing the House Republican position.

It was the land of no-compromise: On health care cuts over ten years, Boehner suggested to Obama, you are $400 billion, I’m at $600 billion. “Can we split the difference here? Can we land at $500 billion?” “Four hundred billion is it,” Obama replied. “I just can’t see how we go any further on that.”

After making $120 billion in other concessions, Obama pleaded with Boehner, “What is it about the politics?” “My guys just aren’t there,” Boehner replied. “We are $150 billion off, man. I don’t get it. There’s something I don’t get.”

The Price of Politics chronicles the inside story of how President Obama and the US Congress tried, and failed, to restore the American economy and set it on a course to fiscal stability. Woodward pierces the secretive world of Washington policymaking once again, with a close-up story crafted from meeting notes, documents, working papers, and interviews with key players, including President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner. Woodward lays bare the broken relationship between President Obama and the Congress.
 

About Bob Woodward

See more books from this Author
Bob Woodward is an associate editor at The Washington Post, where he has worked for forty-one years. He has shared in two Pulitzer Prizes, first for The Washington Post’s coverage of the Watergate scandal, and later for coverage of the 9/11 terrorist attacks. He has authored or coauthored twelve #1 national nonfiction bestsellers. He has two daughters, Tali and Diana, and lives in Washington, DC, with his wife, writer Elsa Walsh.
 
Published September 11, 2012 by Simon & Schuster. 481 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, History, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference. Non-fiction
Bestseller Status:
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Peak Rank on Sep 30 2012
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Weeks as Bestseller
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Critic reviews for The Price of Politics
All: 11 | Positive: 6 | Negative: 5

Kirkus

Below average
Oct 15 2012

An occasionally intriguing look into political grappling at the highest level but mostly an exercise in excruciating detail, most of which boils down to trivial political gossip.

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NY Times

Below average
Reviewed by Michiko Kakutani on Sep 07 2012

Much of this story has already been told in lengthy articles in The New York Times Magazine by Matt Bai and in The Washington Post by Peter Wallsten, Lori Montgomery and Scott Wilson.

Read Full Review of The Price of Politics | See more reviews from NY Times

NY Journal of Books

Above average
Reviewed by Andrew Rosenbaum on Sep 11 2012

The book is a long, detailed recounting of what happened from the election of President Obama, as the administration, both ruling parties, and the Washington bureaucracy tried to manage the enormous debt...

Read Full Review of The Price of Politics | See more reviews from NY Journal of Books

LA Times

Below average
Reviewed by David Lauter on Sep 11 2012

... the intense focus on what is going on in the room blinds Woodward to the far more consequential actions taking place outside.

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Huffington Post

Excellent
Reviewed by Michealene Cristini Risley on Oct 16 2012

One cannot help when reading The Price of Politics to come to a conclusion that Congress pushed Humpty Dumpy over the edge. Once they pushed him, they avoided addressing the debt issue until 2013, when we are obligated by law to cut 2.4 trillion from spending.

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The Boston Globe

Below average
Reviewed by Chuck Leddy on Oct 02 2012

“The Price of Politics” is a pleasure palace for inside-the-Beltway budget and taxation wonks, but for everyone else, it can be something of a sausage-making snoozefest.

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The Daily Beast

Excellent
Reviewed by Miranda Green on Sep 05 2012

...in the new book Price of Politics, Bob Woodward, in characteristic fashion, does his competitors one better by filling in blanks and providing even finer detail.

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The Washington Post

Excellent
Reviewed by Jeff Shesol on Sep 08 2012

The book is a highly detailed dissection of the debt-limit negotiations and how the hope of a “grand bargain” to reform the tax code and reduce runaway entitlement spending...ended, as so many hopes do in Washington

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The New Republic

Below average
Reviewed by Noam Scheiber on Oct 09 2012

In truth, it is damning, except not in the way the author imagines. What’s damning is that the mythology of establishment Washington could exert such a powerful grip on its most famous chronicler.

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PolicyMic

Excellent
Reviewed by Emen William Garcia

Delving into one fascinating turn of events after another with cinematic pacing, The Price of Politics is a stark recollection of the collapse of cooperation in government

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PolicyMic

Excellent
Reviewed by James Velasquez

...Woodward gives us the inside look into the men and women who have made public service a part of their life’s work.

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Reader Rating for The Price of Politics
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