THE CASE FOR LYNDON JOHNSON by James A. Robinson

THE CASE FOR LYNDON JOHNSON

By
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

Conceived originally as a campaign biography, this smooth and quiet pro-assessment of the President's accomplishments in office, in the light of the startling overnight development, may be utilized instead as a pump-primer for middle-road party oratory or as an historical commentary. Certainly the defense presented here--and it is essentially a defense--was constructed upon the assumption of a continuing stalemate of events, insofar as the Vietnam situation had created inflexible positions. The author's attempts to subordinate the war as an issue responsible for Johnson's decline in popularity; instead he reasons that the huge democratic majority in Congress attained in the 1964 election was essentially so unwieldy that special interests tugged and pulled consensus asunder within, rather than without, the party, giving rise to factionalism. Concentrating on the President's achievements, Mr. Robinson touches on the firmness of South American relations; the passage of social reform measures Kennedy was unable to activate; the assembling of intellectual talent (a direct confrontation of critics); and involvement in domestic measures of the Great Society program. the arguments as to the advisability of the Vietnam policy are carefully rooted in determining phenomena not often discussed--the initial approval of Congress, public support and the traditionally conflicting Myrdalian pressures of idealism and practicality. To some this will be diversionary; to some a fresh face on administration policy. The cool line to LBJ.

Pub Date: June 28th, 1968
Publisher: Coward-McCann