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The Man Who Ran Washington: The Life and Times of James A. Baker III

The Man Who Ran Washington: The Life and Times of James A. Baker III

Peter Baker and Susan B. Glasser
Thursday, Oct 15, 2020   |   12:15 - 1:30 pm CDT   |  Zoom

On Thursday, October 15, the Clements Center for National Security and Strauss Center for International Security and Law will host Peter Baker, chief White House correspondent for The New York Times, and Susan Glasser, staff writer at The New Yorker, for a virtual book talk on their recently released biography on James Baker, The Man Who Ran Washington: The Life and Times of James A. Baker III. Please join us from 12:15 - 1:30 pm CDT. Registration begins at 12:00 pm.

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Peter Baker is the chief White House correspondent for The New York Times, responsible for covering President Trump, the fourth president he has covered. He covered President Obama for The Times and Bill Clinton and George W. Bush for The Washington Post.

Mr. Baker joined The Times in 2008 after 20 years at The Post and has written about Mr. Trump since the inception of his administration, through the turmoil inside his White House and the many battles with adversaries outside it. He has written about the investigation into Russia’s election interference, legislative struggles over health care and tax cuts, decisions of war and peace in Afghanistan, Syria and North Korea and the impeachment of the president.

During his first tour at the White House, Mr. Baker co-authored the Post’s original story breaking the Ken Starr investigation of the Monica Lewinsky scandal and served as the paper’s lead writer on the subsequent impeachment and trial of Mr. Clinton. During his next White House assignment, he covered the travails of Mr. Bush’s second term, from the Iraq war and Hurricane Katrina to Supreme Court nomination fights and the economic crisis. During Mr. Obama’s presidency, he covered the raid that killed Osama bin Laden, the reelection campaign and debates over health care, economics, terrorism and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

In between stints at the White House, Mr. Baker and his wife, Susan Glasser, spent four years as Moscow bureau chiefs for The Post, chronicling the rise of Vladimir Putin, the rollback of Russian democracy, the second Chechen war and the terrorist attacks on a theater in Moscow and a school in Beslan. Mr. Baker also covered the early months of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. He was the first American newspaper journalist to report from rebel-held northern Afghanistan after Sept. 11, 2001, and he spent the next eight months covering the overthrow of the Taliban and the emergence of a new government. He later spent six months in the Middle East, reporting from inside Saddam Hussein's Iraq and around the region before embedding with the United States Marines as they drove toward Baghdad. At The Times, he served briefly as Jerusalem bureau chief.

Mr. Baker is the author of five books, most recently "Impeachment: An American History" (Modern Library, 2018) with Jon Meacham, Timothy Naftali and Jeffrey A. Engel. He also wrote “Obama: The Call of History” (New York Times/Callaway, 2017), a finalist for an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Literary Work; “Days of Fire: Bush and Cheney in the White House” (Doubleday, 2013), which was named one of the five Best Non-Fiction Books of 2013 by The New York Times Book Review; “The Breach: Inside the Impeachment and Trial of William Jefferson Clinton” (Scribner, 2000), a New York Times bestseller; and, with Ms. Glasser, “Kremlin Rising: Vladimir Putin’s Russia and the End of Revolution” (Scribner, 2005), named one of the Best Books of 2005 by The Washington Post Book World. He will publish his sixth book in September 2020, “The Man Who Ran Washington: The Life and Times of James A. Baker III,” co-authored with Ms. Glasser and published by Doubleday.

Mr. Baker has won all three major awards devoted to White House reporting: the Gerald R. Ford Prize for Distinguished Coverage of the Presidency (twice), the Aldo Beckman Memorial Award (twice) and the Merriman Smith Memorial Award. Mr. Baker is also a political analyst for MSNBC and a regular panelist on PBS’s “Washington Week.”

A native of the Washington area, Mr. Baker attended Oberlin College and worked for The Washington Times for two years before joining The Post in 1988 as a Virginia reporter. Ms. Glasser is now a staff writer for The New Yorker and the two live in Washington with their son Theodore.

 

Susan B. Glasser is a staff writer at The New Yorker, where she writes a weekly column on life in Trump’s Washington.

Glasser has served as the top editor of several Washington publications; most recently, she founded the award-winning Politico Magazine and went on to become the editor of Politico throughout the 2016 election cycle. She previously served as the editor-in-chief of Foreign Policy, which won three National Magazine Awards, among other honors, during her tenure.

Before that, she worked for a decade at the Washington Post, where she was the editor of Outlook and national news. She also oversaw coverage of the impeachment of Bill Clinton, served as a reporter covering the intersection of money and politics, spent four years as the Post’s Moscow co-bureau chief, and covered the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. She edited Roll Call, a Capitol Hill newspaper, early in her career.

Her books include “Kremlin Rising” and “The Man Who Ran Washington,” both of which she co-wrote with her husband, Peter Baker.

For questions about this event, please email Elizabeth Doughtie at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..