cover image Boss Rove: Inside Karl Rove's Secret Kingdom of Power

Boss Rove: Inside Karl Rove's Secret Kingdom of Power

Craig Unger. Scribner, $24 (254p) ISBN 978-1-4516-9493-2

The best-selling author of House of Bush, House of Saud sets his sights on George W. Bush's senior adviser Karl Rove, investigating the history that Unger claims includes political dirty tricks and corruption with Rove one of the most powerful men in the Republican Party. Unger asserts that Rove has been "putting together a systematic attempt to game the American electoral system by whatever means necessary" in order to establish Republican control of all three branches of government. According to Unger, Rove's tactics ranged from starting rumors about a rival candidate (e.g., that Democratic Texas governor Ann Richards was a lesbian) to appointing U.S. attorneys willing to indict Democratic candidates on dubious charges. And in what became known as "the Valerie Plame Affair," Unger states that Rove almost certainly outed a CIA agent to a journalist in order to discredit reports that there were no WMDs in Iraq; although investigated, Rove was never charged. He left his position in the White House in 2007. Most of these things, however, cannot be traced directly back to Rove, with Unger's attesting that Rove is known to leave "no fingerprints". The result is an account crediting Rove, with his Super PAC American Crossroads, as truly a Republican kingmaker. (Sept.)