“In a democracy political power comes ultimately not from a gun’s barrel or a monarch’s manifesto but from a voting booth. Understanding political power in a democracy requires understanding elections. Explore a single individual deeply enough, Emerson noted, and truths about all individuals emerge. This is as true about campaigns as it is about men. Study a particular election in sufficient depth—study not merely the candidates’ platforms and philosophies and promises but its payoffs, study it in all its brutality—focus deeply enough on all of these elements, and there will emerge universal truths about campaigns in a democracy, and about the nature of the power that shapes our lives.” (from “Means of Ascent: The Years of Lyndon Johnson II: 2” by Robert A. Caro)

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