From the prizewinning author of The Nine, a gripping insider’s account of the momentous ideological war between the John Roberts Supreme Court and the Obama administration.
From the moment John Roberts, the chief justice of the United States, blundered through the Oath of Office at Barack Obama’s inauguration, the relationship between the Supreme Court and the White House has been confrontational. Both men are young, brilliant, charismatic, charming, determined to change the course of the nation—and completely at odds on almost every major constitutional issue. One is radical; one essentially conservative. The surprise is that Obama is the conservative—a believer in incremental change, compromise, and pragmatism over ideology. Roberts—and his allies on the Court—seek to overturn decades of precedent: in short, to undo the ultimate victory FDR achieved in the New Deal.
This ideological war will crescendo during the 2011-2012 term, in which several landmark cases are on the Court’s docket—most crucially, a challenge to Obama’s controversial health-care legislation. With four new justices joining the Court in just five years, including Obama’s appointees Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan, this is a dramatically—and historically—different Supreme Court, playing for the highest of stakes.
No one is better positioned to chronicle this dramatic tale than Jeffrey Toobin, whose prize-winning bestseller The Nine laid bare the inner workings and conflicts of the Court in meticulous and entertaining detail. As the nation prepares to vote for President in 2012, the future of the Supreme Court will also be on the ballot.
“The Nine not only provides a vivid narrative history of the Court’s recent history, but also gives the reader an intimate look at the individual justices, showing how personality, judicial philosophy and personal alliances can inform decisions that have huge consequences for the entire country . . . Driven by the author’s assured narrative voice, The Nine is as informative as it is fascinating, as insightful as it is readable.”
—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times
“Smart and entertaining . . . The Nine is engaging, erudite, candid and accessible, often hard to put down. Toobin is a natural storyteller, and the stories he tells are gripping . . . [He] writes about the court more fluidly and fluently than anyone.”
—David Margolick, The New York Times Book Review
“The Nine is the latest, and by far the best [book] . . . about the Supreme Court.”
—Nina Totenberg, NPR
“This is a remarkable, riveting book. So great are Toobin’s narrative skills that both the justices and their inner world are brought vividly to life.”
—Doris Kearns Goodwin
“[An] absorbing group profile . . . [Toobin] deftly distills the issues and enlivens his narrative of the Court’s internal wrangling with sharp thumbnail sketches.”
“A compelling look at the power and the politics behind the Supreme Court.”
“A major achievement, lucid and probing.”
“Toobin’s sparkling new work is anecdotally rich and clearly written . . . A testimony to [his] skill.”
“Intelligent and even-handed . . . Toobin’s access to the Supremes and their secret little world is phenomenal.”
JEFFREY TOOBIN is the bestselling author of The Nine, Too Close to Call, A Vast Conspiracy, and The Run of His Life. He is a staff writer at The New Yorker and the senior legal analyst at CNN. He lives with his family in New York.