Democratic National Committee chair Schultz assembles a party platform and memoir organized around improving the lives of America's children, in a debut co-authored by Fenster (FDR's Shadow: Louis Howe, the Force that Shaped Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt, 2009, etc.).
A frankly partisan political treatment anticipating the upcoming midterm elections, the author's detailed discussion of the issues chronicles the effects of legislative obstructionism and should help fill in the record for all voters. At age 26, Schultz was the youngest woman ever elected to Florida's state legislature, and she was elected to Congress in 2005, where she has specifically championed the rights of women and children. She is an advocate for bipartisanship and policies based, above all, on fairness. She reviews the major planks in the Democratic Party’s platform, from reform of the financial system to global defense issues and health care, but she also examines social security, Medicare and Medicaid. She takes up particular legislative initiatives dealing with children, women and the family and documents which Republican leaders have represented the most consistent opposition. Schultz is active in the fight against hunger in the United States, and she sponsored the PROTECT Our Children Act of 2008, which aimed the largest law enforcement effort ever against sexual predators and child pornographers and mandated different agencies to cooperate. She also fought for the renewal of the Violence Against Women Act, originally passed in 1994, which was obstructed in the House by tea party supporters. In previous eras, writes the author, these proposed laws, like many others she discusses, would have readily found bipartisan support, not systematic obstruction. Schultz also provides an inspiring account of former Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords' successful bipartisan efforts to improve border security in Arizona.
Though the author doesn’t break much new ground, she delivers a forceful statement that cross-party cooperation is necessary to improve political discourse for future generations.