Rule and Ruin: The Downfall of Moderation and the Destruction of the Republican Party, From…

Paperback | October 9, 2013

byGeoffrey Kabaservice

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As the 2012 elections approach, the Republican Party is rocketing rightward away from the center of public opinion. Republicans in Congress threaten to shut down the government and force a U.S. debt default. Tea Party activists mount primary challenges against Republican officeholders whoappear to exhibit too much pragmatism or independence. Moderation and compromise are dirty words in the Republican presidential debates. The GOP, it seems, has suddenly become a party of ideological purity. Except this development is not new at all. In Rule and Ruin, Geoffrey Kabaservice reveals that the moderate Republicans' downfall began not with the rise of the Tea Party but about the time of President Dwight Eisenhower's farewell address. Even in the 1960s, when left-wing radicalism and right-wingbacklash commanded headlines, Republican moderates and progressives formed a powerful movement, supporting pro-civil rights politicians like Nelson Rockefeller and William Scranton, battling big-government liberals and conservative extremists alike. But the Republican civil war ended with theoverthrow of the moderate ideas, heroes, and causes that had comprised the core of the GOP since its formation. In hindsight, it is today's conservatives who are "Republicans in Name Only."Writing with passionate sympathy for a bygone tradition of moderation, Kabaservice recaptures a time when fiscal restraint was matched with social engagement; when a cohort of leading Republicans opposed the Vietnam war; when George Romney - father of Mitt Romney - conducted a nationwide tour ofAmerican poverty, from Appalachia to Watts, calling on society to "listen to the voices from the ghetto." Rule and Ruin is an epic, deeply researched history that reorients our understanding of our political past and present.Today, moderates are marginalized in the GOP and progressives are all but nonexistent. In this insightful and elegantly argued book, Kabaservice contends that their decline has left Republicans less capable of governing responsibly, with dire consequences for all Americans.

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As the 2012 elections approach, the Republican Party is rocketing rightward away from the center of public opinion. Republicans in Congress threaten to shut down the government and force a U.S. debt default. Tea Party activists mount primary challenges against Republican officeholders whoappear to exhibit too much pragmatism or indepen...

Geoffrey Kabaservice is the author of the National Book Award-nominated The Guardians: Kingman Brewster, His Circle, and the Rise of the Liberal Establishment. He has written for numerous national publications and has been an assistant professor of history at Yale University. He lives outside Washington, DC.

other books by Geoffrey Kabaservice

Format:PaperbackDimensions:504 pages, 9.25 × 6.12 × 0.68 inPublished:October 9, 2013Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0199975515

ISBN - 13:9780199975518

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Table of Contents

Introduction1. The Collapse of the Moderate Republican Establishment, 1960-642. "Moderation Is No Virtue": The GOP and the Goldwater Campaign, 19643. Wresting in the Ruins: Moderates Regain Control of the Republican Party, 19654. From Rat Finks to Reagan: Republican Resurgence, 19665. Moderation's High Tide: George Romney's Rise and Fall, 19676. Moderate Half-Victories and the Presidential Election of 19687. Moderates Get a Piece of the Action: Nixon's First Year, 19698. Clashing with Nixon: The Breakup of the Moderate Republican Movement, 19709. Slouching Towards Bethlehem: The Decline and Fall of the Moderate Republicans, 1971-2011Conclusion