Just in time for the 2012 election, Douglas E. Schoen, one of America’s preeminent political pundits and pollsters, analyzes the growing chasm between the political class—politicians, lobbyists, fundraisers, consultants—and the American Mainstream, frustrated with government’s inability to address the major issues effecting their lives. This gap has given rise to populist movements on the right and the left and driven our two-party system to the brink of possible collapse—in ways that have never been fully discussed or articulated.
Today’s raucous revolt against Washington and Wall Street is a classic populist uprising. In HOPELESSLY DIVIDED: The New Crisis in American Politics and What it Means for 2012 and Beyond, Schoen uses original research to get inside the hearts and minds of the populist uprisingt hat has suddenly thrown American politics into turmoil and show us what it means for the future of American politics.
This book is not about process, but crisis: a crisis of our democracy, of our economy, of the legitimacy of our political system, and ultimately, of our society. The indications are clear: political and economic institutions across the board have lost the confidence of the American people.
Schoen has produced an authoritative guide to the new populism, featuring a combination of proprietary polling data, political analysis, online focus groups, and interviews with on-the-ground players. Published in time for the 2012 election, HOPELESSLY DIVIDED will be a key reference for anyone writing about — or practicing — electoral politics for the remainder of the decade.
Advance Praise for Hopelessly Divided
Doug Schoen has written an insightful book on the polarization that has divided our political system and divided America. Schoen offers a real-world analysis of why this is happening and what can be done about it. Hopelessly Divided reveals just how dysfunctional Washington has become—and just how important the 2012 elections are.
—Michael R. Bloomberg, New York City Mayor
Doug Schoen is one of our most insightful analysts and Hopelessly Divided analyzes the divisions in American politics and offers a step forward. I may not always agree with Schoen’s conclusions but I’ve always known him to be honest and a straight shooter. This is one of those books that is definitely worth reading to understand the 2012 election.
Hopelessly Divided could well become the definitive work explaining why America has become so polarized and it offer a real world assessment of what we need to do to fix our politics. Doug Schoen combines the unique mix of high level practical experience and sophisticated analytical tools to address the central question facing our dysfunctional political system.
— Joe Trippi, Campaign Manager, Dean for America
In a book that should be an important part of the national debate, Schoen offers a wide and challenging view of the changing landscape of our public square. While I disagree at critical points—on President Obama’s role, on many of the Democratic campaigns since 1972, on the efficacy of progressive populism—anyone who cares about politics should read this provocative, intensely argued brief for a new ideology of centrism. I loved fighting with this book
— Robert Shrum, Senior Advisor, Kerry-Edwards 2004 Presidential Campaign