Window on Congress: A Congressional Biography of Barber Conable

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Barber B. Conable Jr. served as a Republican congressman from western New York from 1965 to 1985. He is recognized as one of the most respected members of the House of Representatives in recent years. This biography explores his twenty-year congressional career, focusing on his remarkable educational abilities as a gifted teacher-legislator. Using excerpts from Conable's private journal, his newsletters and news columns, and from personal interviews, James S. Fleming has crafted a book that enables readers to appreciate why Conable was held in high regard by his constituents, his colleagues, the press, and congressional scholars. Political scientist Charles O. Jones expressed the opinion of many when he observed that "Barber Conable was just about everybody's idea of what a congressman should be." Recognizing the importance of Conable's western New York heritage, James Fleming traces Conable's story from his childhood in Warsaw, New York, to his election to the historic Eighty-ninth Congress of 1965-1966. Fleming's chronicle of Conable's subsequent legislative career offers a window on Congress and on an historic period in American history. As the fourth-ranking Republican leader in the House, Conable played a critical role in the Watergate investigation that led to the resignation of President Richard M. Nixon. As the ranking Republican leader of the Ways and Means Committee, he was a key contributor to the tax legislation passed during the Ford, Carter, and Reagan administrations. The highlight of his legislative career was his crucial work in solving the 1983 Social Security crisis. Fleming concludes the biography with a look at Conable's service as World Bank President and his retirement to his beloved western New York home. In his foreword the renowned congressional scholar, Richard F. Fenno Jr. writes, "Barber Conable was an especially admirable United States Representative; and Jim Fleming has written an especially admirable congressional biography. This book is, therefore, a special gift."
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
With his fascinating portrait of one of the ablest legislators on Capitol Hill, Barber Conable of New York, James Fleming has illuminated our understanding of the crucial role of Congress in shaping national policy. --John Brademas, President Emeritus, New York University; Member of Congress (Dem-Ind.), 1959-1981 Barber Conable is one of those rare politicians worthy of a book-length biography by an expert in his field. And Professor Fleming's biography is worthy of Barber Conable. --Theodore J. Lowi, John L. Senior Professor of American Institutions, Cornell University A great member of Congress has found a wonderful biographer. --Burdett Loomis, Department of Political Science, University of Kansas
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781580461283
  • Publisher: Boydell & Brewer, Limited
  • Publication date: 5/13/2004
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 448
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 1.30 (d)

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 20, 2011

    A Model for Public Officials' Responsibility and Behavior

    This should be required reading for any newly elected officials and those contemplating running for elected office. Barber Conable's sense of responsibility, ethics, and concern for his constituents is a model of how best to serve in public office. Conable's integrity and calm approach in what were often contentious debates on critical issues deserves emulation by today's legislators at any level of government.

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