John Bailey, Chairman of the Democratic National Committee and longtime power in Connecticut Democratic Party affairs, first heard of politics around the family dinner table. Personal wealth and single-minded absorption with ""the game"" and the power that came from playing it well enabled him to make a ""full-time thing"" out of the State Democratic Chairmanship when he first earned it. From thence his rise was assured. His biography is a good vehicle for stories about the actual operation of the local political process--in its modern form--and for background on such famous national figures as Chester Bowles, Thomas Dodd, Abraham Ribicoff, John Dempsey, Benton, McMahon, and, of course, John F. Kennedy. It is a long biography, perhaps even just a bit too long and chatty, of a career not yet completed. But it surges with frequent bursts of political lifeblood and excitement. Lieberman has worked for both Sen. Ribicoff and Bailey; an early draft of this book (written while he was at Yale) won the Frank M. Patterson Prize.