Theodore Roosevelt for the Defense: The Courtroom Battle to Save His Legacy

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Theodore Roosevelt for the Defense by journalist Dan Abrams and writer David Fisher tells of what was, in 1915, the case of the century. It recounts the court case where Roosevelt was accused of political corruption and sued for libel by William Barnes, the leader of the Republican Party. Much was at stake for Roosevelt who, despite being the one who made the charge as it wound up in court, had to battle to save his legacy. This was late in Roosevelt’s political career, after he had been president and during the days following The Spanish Civil War, which brought America into prominence as the leader of the free world.

The book slowly retells of the trial with poise and drama. While setting the trial within the context of the time and the history of Teddy Roosevelt, one might begin to recognize why Roosevelt is one of the four depicted at Mt. Rushmore in 1941.

Though Roosevelt was eventually exonerated, all did not go well for those involved. Teddy Roosevelt, who the Republican Party wanted to run for office again, and the lawyer who tried to prosecute for Barnes, were soon to die. Barnes who took Roosevelt to court did not fare well in politics subsequently. The winner was the free press and freedom of speech which finds itself less restricted, with Roosevelt’s criticisms now being considered fair comment. We now live in an age where much more is at stake in common and political dialogue, and much more is allowed and expected in political fights. It can be a difficult and confusing challenge to decide what is free speech, what is anger, what is stupid, what is uneducated, what is legitimate anger, what is polarized or argumentative, what is bias, and what is hate. However, this is not about diversity, but rather two rich and famous politicians fighting. There is a bunch at stake in this complicated tale filled with political maneuverings, shedding some light on the contests that still besiege us.

Reviewed By:

Author Dan Abrams • David Fisher
Star Count 4/5
Format Hard
Page Count 400 pages
Publisher Hanover Square Press
Publish Date 21-May-2019
ISBN 9781335016447 Buy this Book
Issue July 2019
Category History


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