Sunday, May 10, 2009

Allan Bonner's Book "Political Conventions" a Timely Read

In the Spirit of my Blogger's Manifesto I am doing this post as an excerpt of my thoughts from my Foreword as the publisher of Allan Bonner’s latest book “Political Conventions the Art of Getting Elected and Governing.”

It follows his previous book “Political Columns – Behind the Scenes with Powerful People.” We got “Political Conventions” out in January just as federal election was happening that gave Stephen Harper a repeat minority government.

My best guess is we are heading for another federal election in the late fall or early winter of 2009. This book has case studies, commentary, insights and advice on the various “conventions” of political campaigning and effective governing. He covers conventional element and new political nuances in Media Relations, Campaigning and Public Speaking. His war stories and personal experiences are in the political convention section.

Allan serves up insight and advice on interview techniques and traps, websites, blogs, advertising, fundraising and all the other tools and techniques of political campaigning, media relations, speech making and yes, even governing.

During the American election season Bonner went to various campaign head quarters in New York and for the New Hampshire Primaries to get a feel for the changing nature of U.S. political campaigning. He wrote a number of columns for The Hill Times and did stints on NPR with an analysis of the Republican and Democratic Conventions. This led to more research and a significant concentration in Political Conventions on the American election and the U.S. political process.

That has turned Political Conventions into more of a “how to” book about how to get elected and then about what it takes to govern. It will also interest political aides and advisers as much as candidates.

For Canadians who what to know more about the American election culture, Political Conventions is a good place to start to gain an appreciation for its strengths, weaknesses and some comparisons to our model of governing. The chapters are thematically tight so it is a book you can pick up and read one chapter at a time. You can jump all over the book and still get a grasp of the essence of what is being said of the campaign and governing conventions Bonner explores.

An election is looming in Canada. Bonner’s “Political Conventions” is timely once more, especially for all those who will engage actively in the political process, be it on the front lines, in the backrooms or on the phones, the emails and the doorsteps. Even the typical Canadian voter, who is just trying to get a better understanding about what is happening in a campaign, will benefit from reading Bonner’s “Political Conventions.”

The best way to get the book is to email me at with your contact information and we will mail it to you for $25.00 including tax, shipping and handling.