Caro’s ‘Passage Of Power’: LBJ’s Political Genius
Judge Thurgood Marshall (left) in discussion with President Lyndon Baines Johnson, following Marshall’s appointmentas a member of the Supreme Court, the first African-American to hold the post.
Robert Caro writes obsessively about power. Fittingly, it’s Lyndon Johnson — catapulted suddenly into the presidency “in the crack of a gunshot” — who consumes him.
The Passage of Power, the fourth volume of Caro’s massive biography of Lyndon Johnson, is released this week. Caro has dedicated decades to meticulously researching Johnson’s life, and the previous books in the series have been almost universally hailed as a significant achievement in American letters.
Those books told the story of Johnson’s rise to national prominence. In The Passage of Power, Caro takes up Johnson’s dismal years as vice president and his sudden presidency, which he used to shepherd the 1964 Civil Rights Act through Congress.
Morning Edition host Steve Inskeep talks to Caro about the book and his portrayal of the brilliant, sometimes ruthless president. LISTEN TO THE INTERVIEW/READ MORE……..