A spellbinding biography of one of the most powerful and dignified men ever to come to DC—Senator Mike Mansfield.
Mike Mansfield's career as the longest serving majority leader is finally given its due in this extraordinary biography. In many respects, Mansfield's dignity and decorum represent the high-water mark of the US Senate: he was respected as a leader who helped build consensus on tough issues and was renowned for his ability to work across the aisle and build strong coalitions. Amazingly, he would have breakfast every morning with a member of the opposing party.
Mansfield was instrumental in pushing through some of the most influential legislation of the twentieth century. He was at the helm when the Senate passed landmark legislation such as the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the Voting Rights Act of 1965, the creation of Medicare, and the nuclear test ban treaty. Mansfield played a crucial role in shaping America's foreign policy, corresponding with JFK about his opposition to the growing presence of the US in Southeast Asia. As ambassador to Japan, his conversations with Cambodia and China paved the way for Nixon's historic trip to China in 1972.
Don Oberdorfer was a diplomatic correspondent for the Washington Post from 1976 until his retirement in 1993. His other books include From the Cold War to a New Era, also available in paperback from Johns Hopkins, and The Two Koreas.