Maine author and journalist Douglas Rooks will read from his new book, Rise, Decline and Renewal: The Democratic Party in Maine, just published by Hamilton Books, on Saturday, April 14, 1:30 – 3:00 p.m., at the Southwest Harbor Public Library.
Rise, Decline and Renewal tells the remarkable story of the Maine Democratic Party—how it suddenly rose from irrelevance in 1954 with the election of Governor Ed Muskie, successfully challenged the ruling Republican Party over the next two decades, and initiated a creative period of wide-ranging reforms that produced a model government for a state long perceived as a cultural and economic backwater.
The final chapters describe how Maine’s largest political party can again seize the initiative, energize a new generation of young people, and govern in the public interest once more.
While Rise, Decline and Renewal focuses primarily on the evolution of the Democratic Party, it makes a strong case that only a vigorous two-party system, based on competition rather than endless conflict, can restore Maine’s state government to health.
Rooks is also the author of Statesman: George Mitchell and the Art of the Possible (Down East Books, 2016.) Signed copies of both books will be available following questions and discussion.
As a journalist, Douglas Rooks served as editorial page editor for the Kennebec Journal in Augusta, editor and publisher of Maine Times; he has written about state government and politics for 33 years, earning numerous national and regional awards.