Positively American: Winning Back the Middle-Class Majority One Family at a Time

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New York's popular senior senator, who won reelection by the largest margin in the state's history, offers a bold plan for change in the Democratic party

As the results of the last presidential election played out, it became clear that while Democrats call themselves the party of the middle, the middle class does not consider the Democrats their party. Now, Chuck Schumer, who has gained national prominence as the head of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and as a ...

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Positively American: Winning Back the Middle-Class Majority One Family at a Time

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Overview

New York's popular senior senator, who won reelection by the largest margin in the state's history, offers a bold plan for change in the Democratic party

As the results of the last presidential election played out, it became clear that while Democrats call themselves the party of the middle, the middle class does not consider the Democrats their party. Now, Chuck Schumer, who has gained national prominence as the head of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and as a member of the Finance Committee, offers his plan for capturing the middle-class vote and moving his party back into the majority. Democrats can accomplish this, the senator explains, without abandoning their traditional principles.

Schumer envisions a hypothetical, average middle-class American family—he thinks of them as "The Baileys"—who spend "as much time talking about the cost of cornflakes as the cost of the national debt." He then details specific proposals he believes would keep America safe, secure, and on top; and support the aspirations of a prosperous and growing middle class while speaking to anxieties created in a world changed by technology and globalization. For example, he proposes to:

• increase the number of college graduates by 50%

• reduce property taxes by 50%

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Editorial Reviews

Michiko Kakutani
At times, the volume seems to want to be a Democratic version of Newt Gingrich’s “Contract With America,” but unlike Mr. Gingrich, Mr. Schumer — who is now the third-ranking Democrat in the Senate — is not a polarizing bomb-thrower. For that matter, his book, much like his post-’80s record in the House and Senate (which includes helping to write the 1994 crime bill, spearheading passage of the Brady Bill, supporting the death penalty and calling for increased Homeland Security measures) is deliberately centrist: practical and pragmatic in tone, Clintonian in its willingness to mix up proposals traditionally labeled liberal or conservative, eager to use common sense to find common ground on issues like education and immigration.
— The New York Times
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781594865725
  • Publisher: Rodale Press, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/9/2007
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.26 (w) x 9.24 (h) x 1.16 (d)

Meet the Author

CHUCK SCHUMER was elected to the New York State Assembly at age 23—making him one of the youngest members since Theodore Roosevelt—and to Congress at age 29. In 1998 he became New York's junior senator, and he now holds the senior position. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife. They have two daughters.

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Interviews & Essays

What do Democrats stand for?

My new book, Positively American: Winning Back the Middle-Class Majority One Family at a Time tries to answer that question. I wrote it because Democrats -- and the country -- need a new vision for the changed world.

Positively American has exciting war stories and colorful anecdotes -- from my improbable Senate election in 1998 to the nearly impossible take-over of the Senate this past fall.

I introduce my old friends, Joe and Eileen Bailey, a middle-class couple from Massapequa, New York (no matter that they're imaginary) and describe the eight words -- war in Iraq, cut taxes, no gay marriage -- that propelled Bush to reelection.

What are our eight words? To answer that question, I propose the 50% Solution, my ambitious but attainable plan to reach the middle-class, win in 2008 and set America back on track.

Positively American is the beginning of a lively discussion. I hope you get a chance to read it and offer your eight words at positivelyamericanbook.com.

Chuck

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 15, 2007

    Fantastic Timely Read

    Senator Schumer's timely and substantive book is a must read for all interested citizens. He addresses the needs of the middle class, identifies several serious issues that need to be addressed by Congress and the country and proposes unique and insightful solutions that all of use should understand and support He packages it all in an easy to read format.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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