Summer Stock: Behind the Scenes with LBJ in '48

Joe Phipps, Author Texas Christian University Press $27.95 (338p) ISBN 978-0-87565-107-1
Phipps refers to himself as ``one of the coterie of innocent servitors Johnson kept around for running errands.'' But he was no gofer: he coordinated the candidate's radio and personal appearances throughout Texas during LBJ's 1948 campaign for the U.S. Senate. The 20-year-old aide discerned distinct facets in the 39-year-old politician--Phony Lyndon, Naughty and Spoiled Lyndon, Bad Lyndon, Good Lyndon--and here provides vivid examples of each. The relationship between Johnson and Phipps was prickly; one shouting match resulted in Phipps's banishment from the campaign chopper as the candidate went into an epic sulk and threatened to quit the race. Yet after LBJ's surprise electoral victory over former Texas governor Coke Stevenson, he urged Phipps to join his staff in Washington. Phipps, perceiving that Johnson was a user-up of aides, declined and never regretted it. He went on to become a TV news anchor and is now executive producer at a Texas television station. In a series of anecdotes that are often hilarious and sometimes touching, we are given a private look at the young LBJ in all his cantankerousness. Photos. 10,000 first printing. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 01/01/1992
Release date: 01/01/1992
Genre: Nonfiction
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