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Publishers WeeklyIn this slim manifesto, former chief speechwriter for President Bill Clinton, Waldman (My Fellow Americans) offers his prescriptions for purifying American democracy, invoking Thomas Paine's credo that "the government depends for its legitimacy entirely on the consent of the governed." The author spotlights seven key reforms-from wide-scale election reform (mandating universal voter registration; halting disenfranchisement of voters due to political party maneuvering or irrelevant crime records; ensuring electronic voting machines are not rigged or malfunctioning) to cleaning up politics (ending gerrymandering; retiring the Electoral College) to restoring balance within government (ending the imperial presidency, ratcheting up the watchdog function of Congress). Waldman keeps his book refreshingly nonpartisan, concentrating his energies on fusing abstract idealism with sensible suggestions informed by his extensive knowledge of how to push through specific reforms. The book is timely during a presidential election year, but transcends a fleeting election to offer wisdom for getting and keeping a democracy.
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