‘Game Change,’ part two, up next on Overheard

I am happy to announce that I am the proud owner of “Double Down: Game Change 2012.” It came to me as a Christmas gift. I haven’t read it just yet, but will get to it soon.

It’s worth mentioning here because Evan Smith, editor in chief of the Texas Tribune, has interviewed the book’s authors, John Heilmann and Mark Halperin, two premier journalists who wrote the volume as a sequel to “Game Change,” the landmark profile of the historic 2008 election of Barack Obama as the nation’s first African-American president.

“Overheard with Evan Smith” will re-air the interview with Heilmann and Halperin on Thursday, beginning at 8 p.m. on Panhandle PBS.


Obama has described his 2012 re-election victory as more gratifying than his 2008 election. Given the heavy headwinds he had to face — a troubled economy, the controversy over health care legislation, his battles with Congress — he seemed to have many factors working against him.

But he defeated Republican nominee Mitt Romney by 5 million votes, winning 51 percent of the ballots. However, I found an interesting tidbit about this victory.

Barack Obama is the first president in history to win re-election to a second term with fewer electoral votes and a smaller percentage of the popular vote than he won in his first term. Obama defeated Romney 332-206 in the Electoral College; his victory over John McCain four years earlier was 365-173. What’s more, his 51-47 percent victory over Romney was smaller than the 53-46 margin he ran up against McCain.

I suppose he should feel gratified that he was able to win re-election, even though it was by a narrower margin than perhaps he would have wanted.

Heilmann and Halperin take a long and detailed look at that amazing campaign, its ups and downs, twists and turns.

Evan Smith’s interview is worth seeing a second time.


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