Grover Cleveland is truly the forgotten conservative: a man of dignity, integrity, and courage often overlooked by the history books. Historian and author John Pafford reveals a president who deserves more attention. Cleveland might not have presided over deeply troubled times, but he set a standard for principled leadership in office that is especially relevant today.
John M. Pafford
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Over the last year, I've read 25 biographies, and this was the worst. The primary issue is that no attempt at objectivity was made. The author has made his opinions and politics abundantly clear, and leaves out any explanation of value statements on the apparent assumption the reader already agrees with his statements of any decision being good or bad. The narrative went between awkwardly conversational and sounding, as another reviewer stated, like a Wikipedia article. I will definitely be advising others to find a different biography of President Cleveland.
If you are looking for a short biography of our 22nd & 24th president, I would prefer Grover Cleveland by Henry A. Graff (2002) that is part of Arthur M. Schlsinger's American President series. For a more unbiased reporting description of Cleveland's presidency, I preferred The Presidencies of Grover Cleveland (1988) by Richard E. Welch, Jr. that is part of the University of Kansas series on the American presidencies. For a more full biographic treatment, I enjoyed the two volume set by Allan Nevins, Grover Cleveland: :To the Loss of the Presidency (vol.1) and Grover Cleveland:: To the End of a Career (vol. 20, (2003). I have also read Matthew Alger's book, The President is a Sick Man (2012) dealing with Cleveland's secret operation for a oral cancer in 1893 which was an interesting tidbit of Cleveland history.
Getting back to John M. Pafford's, The Forgotten Conservative, his dedication of the book is ":To the memory of Grover Cleveland, a Christian statesman and...
Having read 1,000+ word tomes on Washington, Adams, Lincoln, Eisenhower, Truman, Reagan and other stellar presidents, I wasn't interested in another long biography, so this concise, informative read fit the bill.
Most Americans, perhaps, know Grover Cleveland as the president who was elected in 1884, lost running for his second term in 1888 (though he won the popular vote) but returned to the White House in 1892. He was the only man other than FDR to claim the popular vote three times. And yes, believe or not, the constitutional conservative was somehow a Democrat. Many would argue that last true Democrat as would clearly, far moreso than even Truman, be a Republican today. Certainly Wilson and FDR began the Dems shift toward socialism -- help from W.J. Bryan, who thankfully never won -- we see today in nearly every senate Democrat, cabinet member and obviously presidential nominee.
Cleveland followed three basics principles of American Exceptionalism: smaller...
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