Interview with Mark Updegrove. In “The Last Republicans,” presidential historian Mark Updegrove offers a groundbreaking look at the lives of George H. W. Bush and George W. Bush, the most consequential father-son pair in American history, often in their own words. Drawing extensively on exclusive access and interviews with both Bush presidents, Updegrove reveals for the first time their influences and perspectives on each other’s presidencies; their views on family, public service, and America’s role in the world; and their unvarnished thoughts on President Donald Trump and the radical transformation of the Republican Party he now leads. “The Last Republicans” offers revealing and often moving portraits of the forty-first and forty-third presidents, as well as an elegy for the Republican “establishment,” which once stood for putting the interests of the nation over those of any single man. Updegrove is an author, presidential historian, and president and CEO of the LBJ Foundation. He is the author of four books on the presidency including “Indomitable Will: LBJ in the Presidency.” He appears regularly on Good Morning America, and This Week, and has written for The New York Times, The Hill, Politico, The Daily Beast, Time, Parade, National Geographic, and Texas Monthly.
Interview with Jim Schultz. Jim Schultz is an American lawyer, political pundit, and was an Associate White House Counsel for U.S. President Donald J. Trump until November 2017. Schultz was part of the legal team at the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland and the Trump Transition Team. Schultz previously worked as general counsel to Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett and as a top aide to Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-Pa.), when he was a U.S. attorney. He earned his undergraduate degree from Temple University before attending law school at Widener University. In addition to having provided legal counsel to the President of the United States and his senior staff, Schultz has provided legal counsel to the Governor of Pennsylvania and his senior staff and cabinet, a number of federal and state elected officials and has handled high profile matters for private sector clients. In his role as Special Assistant to the President and Senior Associate Counsel to the President, Schultz provided counsel to the White House on matters involving government contracting, procurement, trade, and transportation and infrastructure. Schlutz had liaison responsibilities to the Department of Transportation and the General Services Administration. He played a significant role in the drafting and review of Executive Orders and was involved in the interview and selection process for United States Attorneys and Federal District and Circuit Court Judges. Schultz also served as counsel to the Presidential Transition and was as a member of the legal team during the 2016 Republican National Convention. Throughout the 2016 election cycle, Jim was a frequent contributor on NBC 10 Philadelphia and currently serves as a contributor to CNN.
Interview with Michael Nelson. Published on the first anniversary of Trump’s inauguration, Nelson’s book offers the most complete and up-to-date assessment of this still-unfolding story. In “Trump’s First Year,” Michael Nelson, the Fulmer Professor of Political Science at Rhodes College and a Senior Fellow at the University of Virginia’s Miller Center, provides a thorough account and scholarly assessment of Donald Trump’s first year as president, starting with his election and transition in 2016. The analysis is grounded in the modern history of the presidency as well as in the larger constitutional and political order. Donald Trump took office in January 2017 under mostly favorable conditions. He inherited neither a war nor an economic depression, and his party controlled both houses of Congress. He leveraged this successfully by delivering on his campaign promises to roll back regulations on business, and he saw his nominee for the Supreme Court, Neil Gorsuch, approved swiftly and with little controversy. Many more actions, however, have been perceived as failures or even threats to a safe, functional democracy, from immigration policies defied by state and local governments and volatile dealings with North Korea to unsuccessful attempts to pass major legislation and the inability to fill government positions or maintain consistent White House staff.