She is, quite simply, the most famous, most complex, most loved/hated/admired/reviled woman -- perhaps person -- in America. And, whether she fulfills her life's ambition or not, she can already lay claim to being the first woman ever considered a serious contender for the presidency.
From the beginning, there have been the inevitable comparisons to Argentina's legendary Eva Perón. Sex, power, money, lies, scandal, tragedy, and betrayal were the things that defined the lives of both women. Yet most of what we know about Hillary Rodham Clinton is seen in the context of her tumultuous marriage to the 42nd President. Now a power in the Senate, Hillary waits for the right moment to make her own run for the White House.
In the style of his #l New York Times bestsellers The Day Diana Died and The Day John Died, as well as Jack and Jackie, Jackie After Jack, George and Laura and Sweet Caroline, Christopher Andersen draws on important sources -- many speaking here for the first time -- to paint a startling portrait of America's most controversial woman. Among the revelations:
*How U.S. history has been shaped -- and will continue to be shaped -- by the arrangement between Hillary and Bill known as "The Plan."
* Important new details about the role Hillary played in the scandalous eleventh hour pardons of armed radicals, drug dealers, tax cheats, embezzlers, money launderers and more.
* How the outgoing First Lady registered like a bride at a gift store and left the White House with $400,000 worth of "gifts" belonging to the American people.
* How JFK Jr. almost thwarted her Senate plans.
* New details about Hillary's relationship with Vince Foster.
* How Hillary has coped with Bill's hundreds of affairs, and the new women in her husband's life.
* What Martha Stewart did for Hillary, and how Hillary repaid her.
* How Hillary is using the 2004 elections as a springboard to her own future presidential candidacy—regardless of who wins.
Whatever the ultimate judgment of history, the ongoing saga of Hillary Clinton's inexorable rise to power continues to stir passions, and to make her the American Evita.
Early on, relates Christopher Andersen in American Evita, Bill and Hillary Clinton created "The Plan"---an arrangement in which the Clintons would reverse roles once he was out of office and Mr. Clinton would help his wife reach her ultimate goal: the presidency. Now that Mrs. Clinton is a Senator from New York, the second part of The Plan is in effect, and regaining the White House is only part of it--if elected president, Mrs. Clinton would also, according to Andersen, work to get her husband installed as a Supreme Court Justice. It becomes clear over the course of this book that Mrs. Clinton was the guiding hand during her husband's two terms, including heading up the near-constant damage control required as a result of a string of scandals and her husband's reckless behavior. This was not done out of loyalty to her husband, Andersen stresses, but because she recognized that she needed to save him in order to further her own career later on. Though much of the information in this book has been printed before, Andersen does offer tantalizing new details about Mrs. Clinton's long-running affair with Vince Foster, the numerous pardons of criminals that were made in the final days of the Clinton administration in order to help Mrs. Clinton's Senate bid, her self-serving actions in the wake of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and her efforts to constantly upstage the 2004 Democratic nominees for president, particularly John Kerry. Part of the reason for doing this, Andersen maintains, is that she actually wants the Democrats to lose the presidential election in 2004 in order to better set the stage for her own run in 2008. One cannot read this book without being struck by the fact that nearly every move Mrs. Clinton has made over the past 30 years has been calculated, and in this regard American Evita is a fascinating depiction of "the most famous, most controversial, most complex, most loved-hated-admired-reviled woman---perhaps person---in America."