The most comprehensive biography of Barry Goldwater ever written is back by popular demand with a new foreword by Phyllis Schlafly and an updated introduction by the author.
Lee Edwards renders a penetrating account of the icon who put the conservative movement on the national stage. Replete with previously unpublished details of his life, Goldwater established itself as the definitive study of the political maverick who made a revolution.
Hang in long enough and rehabilitation is virtually assured--witness Nixon--so one wonders at the author's dismay that Goldwater, whose 1964 presidential campaign motto, ``Extremism in the defense of liberty is no vice,'' alarmed liberals, has now become their ``favorite conservative.'' For the first 400 pages, Edwards, who teaches politics at Catholic University of America, finds no wrong in the former Republican senator from Arizona--well, only his jealousy of Reagan--and proposes that as standard-bearer he ``cast a brilliant lasting light.'' Although, as a presidential candidate, Goldwater carried only six states, Edwards makes the Johnson-Goldwater contest the centerpiece of his tedious book. Ultimately, it's the character of the 86-year-old senator in retirement that Edwards finds troubling: Goldwater's repudiation of the Moral Majority and his pro-choice and pro-gay rights stands. Has the senator been influenced by his new wife, Susan, a liberal 31 years his junior? Or by his grandson, an HIV-positive gay man, or by his lesbian grandniece? Edwards offers no opinion, an odd restraint in a book whose objective clearly is to advance a conservative agenda. Photos not seen by PW.