In the new episode of our “educational” series The Audit, Dave, Josh, and their study buddy Senator Nina Turner audit the final lessons of David Axelrod and Karl Rove’s 24-part MasterClass on campaign strategy and messaging. Did they learn anything valuable? Absolutely not. Did they have a great time cutting through Axelrod and Rove’s whitewashed propaganda? Well, that’s a more subjective question.
During the final lessons, Axelrod and Rove discuss the current state of American politics, and the study group breaks down their discussion in real time. You might be surprised to learn which of these two campaign pros actually understands why our politics have become so divisive and which one is completely oblivious to any measurable reality. Actually, you probably won't be.
A rough transcript of this episode is available here.
Click here to get access to Lever Premium Podcasts.
In addition to The Audit’s podcast content, their creative team does extensive research on each season’s subject matter. This season, they delved into Axelrod and Rove’s history, even though they certainly, definitely, absolutely, did not want to.
Please enjoy The Audit’s comprehensive bibliography.
For further reading about David Axelrod and Karl Rove:
Alexander, Paul. Machiavelli’s Shadow The Rise And Fall Of Karl Rove. Modern Times, 2008.
Axelrod, David. Believer: My Forty Years in Politics. Penguin, 2016.
Cannon, Carl M., DuBose, Lou, and Reid, Jan. Boy Genius: Karl Rove, the Architect of George W. Bush's Remarkable Political Triumphs. PublicAffairs, 2005.
Issenberg, Sasha. The Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns. Broadway Books, 2013.
Ivins, Molly and DuBose, Lou. Bushwacked: Life in George Bush’s America. Vintage Books, 2003.
Ivins, Molly. Shrub, The Short but Happy Political life of George W. Bush. Vintage Books, 2000.
Mayer, William G. The Uses and Misuses of Politics: Karl Rove and the Bush Presidency. University Press of Kansas, 2021.
Moore, James and Slater, Wayne. The Architect: Karl Rove and the Master Plan for Absolute Power. Crown, 2006.
Rove, Karl. Courage and Consequence: My Life as a Conservative in the Fight. Threshold Editions, 2010.
Smith, Jean Edward. Bush. Simon and Schuster, 2010.
Unger, Craig. Boss Rove: Inside Karl Rove's Secret Kingdom of Power. Scribner, 2012.
Black, Curtis. “The Definitive Guide for Cable Hosts, Bookers, and Editors to the Fraud and Failure That Was Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel” The Intercept, May 20, 2019
Featherstone, Liza. “Talk is Cheap: The Myth of the Focus Group” The Guardian, February 6, 2018
Glasser, Susan B. “Hired Guns Fuel Fundraising Race” Washington Post, April 30, 2000
Green, Joshua. “Karl Rove in a Corner.” The Atlantic, November 2004
Green, Joshua. “The Man Karl Rove Couldn’t Beat” The Atlantic, May 13, 2011
Green, Joshua. “The Rove Presidency” The Atlantic, September 2007
Grim, Ryan and Cohen, Rachel. “The Democratic Party’s Consultant Factory” The Intercept, April 6, 2021
Grim, Ryan, and Fang, Lee. “The Dead Enders: Candidates Who Signed Up to Battle Donald Trump Must Get Past the Democratic Party First” The Intercept, January 23, 2018
Haberman, Maggie. “Rove stumbles, critics pounce” Politico, February 20, 2013
Hart, Patricia. “Brain cancer has put life and politics in perspective for Lena Guerrero.” Texas Monthly, September 2001
Horton, Scott. “Vote Machine: How Republicans hacked the Justice Department” Harper’s, March 2008
Horton, Scott. “Six Questions for Paul Alexander, Author of Machiavelli’s Shadow” Harper’s, July 1, 2008
Horton, Scott. “Six Questions for James Moore on Karl Rove’s Political Prosecutions” Harper’s, July 19, 2007.
Mugwump Blues. “Political Books: Karl Rove Sociopath? A Review of Rove’s Autobiography” Daily Kos, October 7, 2013
Perlstein, Rick. “The Sudden But Well-Deserved Fall of Rahm Emanuel” The New Yorker, December 31, 2015
Poletti, Jonathan. “Outing John Weaver: An ugly gay Republican story” Medium, January 16, 2021
Purdum, Todd. “Karl Rove’s Split Personality” Vanity Fair, October 30, 2006
Toobin, Jeffrey. “The Shrum Curse” The New Yorker, August 13, 2007
Vogel, Kenneth P. “Karl Rove and the Modern Money Machine” Politico, July/August 2014
Vogel, Kenneth P., Burns, Alexander and Parti, Tarini. “Karl Rove vs. the tea party” Politico, February 2, 2013
If you like this episode, feel free to pitch into the tip jar — it helps us do this kind of reporting:
We hope you enjoy our new weekly podcast — it’s the next step in our plan to build a powerful independent voice to take on corporate media.
Only paid subscribers can comment. Please subscribe or sign in to join the conversation.