Charles Robbins

Life Among the Cannibals

During a storied 30-year career in the U.S. Senate, Arlen Specter rose to Judiciary Committee chairman, saved and defeated Supreme Court nominees, championed medical research, wrote watershed crime laws, always staying defiantly independent, “The Contrarian” as TIME Magazine billed him in a package of the nation’s ten best Senators. It all ended with one vote, for President Obama’s stimulus, when Specter broke with Republicans to provide the margin of victory to prevent another Depression.
Shunned by the GOP faithful, Specter changed parties, giving Democrats a 60-vote supermajority and throwing Washington into a tailspin. He kept charging, taking the first bursts of Tea Party fire at public meetings on Obama’s health care reform plan. Undaunted, Specter cast the key vote for the health plan.
In Life Among the Cannibals, written with Charles Robbins, Specter candidly describes the battles that led to his party switch, his tough transition, unexpected struggles and duplicity he faced, and his tumultuous campaign and eventual defeat in the 2010 Pennsylvania Democratic Primary.
Taking us behind the scenes in the Capitol, the White House, and on the campaign trail, he shows how the rise of extremists -- in both parties – has displaced tolerance with purity tests, purging centrists and precluding moderate, bipartisan consensus.

Published March 27, 2012, by Thomas Dunne Books /​ St. Martin's Press.

Selected Works

“. . . A riveting look at how love, lust, and murder can derail a presidential campaign. . . this thriller is a must read.” Publishers Weekly (Starred, Boxed Review). Published September 2012 by Thomas Dunne Books / St. Martin's Press.
Written with former Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle, a primer on how the U.S. Senate works. Publication scheduled for January 2013 by Thomas Dunne Books / St. Martin's Press
Political Memoir
With Sen. Arlen Specter. A first-hand account of the rise of political extremism and how it’s gridlocking government. Kirkus Reviews: “A highly readable battle cry from the moderate center.” Published March 2012, by Thomas Dunne Books / St. Martin's Press.
With Sen. Arlen Specter. "An insider's perspective on vital, debatable, historic terrain."
New York Times Book Review

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