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Download Why Not Me?: The Inside Story Behind the Making and the Unmaking of the Franken Presidency Audiobook

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3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (868 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Al Franken Narrator: Al Franken Publisher: Penguin Random House Format: Abridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: July 2000 ISBN: 9780553750799
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Updated with more on the real race in 2000!

First came Theodore White's The Making of the President, 1960. Then All the President's Men. Now the searing chronicle that will forever change the way we view the man and the office...

Why Not Me?

...chronicles the dramatic rise and dizzying fall of Al Franken, who would become the first Jewish president of the United States. Meet the president as a young man. Witness the Franken campaign in its infancy, as the candidate pledges "to walk the state of New Hampshire, diagonally and then from side to side." Go behind the scenes and meet Team Franken, the candidate's brain trust: including brother and deputy campaign manager Otto, a recovering sex addict and alcoholic, and campaign manager Norm Ornstein, the think-tank policy wonk who masterminds the single-issue (ATM fees) campaign. Cheer as Franken stuns the pundits by defeating Al Gore for the Democratic nomination, then is swept into office carrying all fifty states and the District of Columbia.

Then, through excerpts from Bob Woodward's detailed account of the first hundred days, The Void, go inside the Franken White House, which is gripped by crisis from day one. After the highly medicated chief executive exhibits a roller coaster of bipolar behavior, Franken is forced to cooperate with the Joint Congressional Committee on the President's Mood Swings. And when the committee releases Franken's personal diaries to the public, his presidency faces its ultimate crisis.


It began on a cold day in January, when Alan Stuart Franken took the oath of office and became the 44th President of the United States. It ended 144 tumultuous days later with the words: "Boy, am I sorry." Here for the first time in paperback is the searing chronicle of Al Franken's journey to the White House--the visionary campaign, the landslide victory, the hookers, the payoffs--told through confessions of key aides, Franken's own diaries, and excerpts from Bob Woodward's book on the first 100 days of the Franken Presidency, entitled The Void.

Witness the campaign in its infancy, as Franken decides to run on a single-issue platform: lower ATM Fees. Follow along as Team Franken canvasses the nation, attacking Al Gore, attacking U.S. banks, attending a couple of prayer breakfasts. Then go inside the Franken White House where for 144 days a President virtually reinvents the office, boldly appointing the first all-Jewish cabinet, then battling a severe case of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. As scandal rocks the Administration, Why Not Me? becomes a tragic American morality tale: of a man who dared to believe that anyone could be president--and paid the price for proving he was right. -->


From the Trade Paperback edition. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • An imaginatively funny and fresh satire...part autobiography, part manifesto, part diary  and part eulogy. The Washington Post
  • [A] witty send-up of presidential politics...Franken proves again that he's one of our savviest satirists. People
  • [A] witty send-up of Presidential politics--.--.--.--Franken proves again that he's one of our savviest satirists. People -->
  • A gleefully absurd, rambling jaunt through the ritual of  American campaigning...a hilariously farcical account. Entertainment Weekly
  • Hilarious throughout...Franken has perfect pitch. The New York Times Book Review
  • Very funny--.--.--.--Franken has perfect pitch. P.J. O'Rourke, The New York Times Book Review
  • Screamingly hilarious. Newsday
  • Don't miss Al Franken's #1 bestseller Rush Limbaugh Is a Big Fat Idiot and Other Observations:
  • Wickedly funny. Newsweek
  • This book establishes Al Franken  as a master of political humor. The Washington Times
  • Funny, angry and intelligent. The New York Times Book Review
  • It's a scream! The Seattle Times
  • A very funny book. USA Today
  • An imaginatively funny and fresh satire--.--.--.--part autobiography, part manifesto, part diary and part eulogy. The Washington Post

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Debbie | 2/20/2014

    " Hysterical and still pertinent "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Ian | 2/19/2014

    " One of the funniest books I've ever read. Al Franken decides to run for president. His primary issue? Eliminating ATM fees! What's even funnier is that a few years after this book came out, Franken was elected to the US Senate! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kaethe | 2/17/2014

    " To my delight, Franken has turned out to be a much better politician than most, and certainly better than this satire would have suggested. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karen | 2/8/2014

    " It was funny. Reading it mid election season in 2012 couldn't be better timing. It made for a great, humorous distraction from the real politics going on around me. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Edelhart Kempeneers | 1/31/2014

    " Nee. "Oh, The Things I Know" vond ik heel goed, maar deze absoluut niet. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Jessie | 1/23/2014

    " Not his best, by far. Also slightly homophobic. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Kim Caldwell | 1/18/2014

    " Fantastic fictional run for president in 2000 - too bad it wasn't real. It still would have beat the real outcome. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rebecca | 1/9/2014

    " The son of a daughter of a son and daughter of immigrants. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Bebe Burnside | 1/8/2014

    " This was an entertaining view of what a Al Franken for President campaign might look like. Of course funny and brilliant at the same time. I enjoyed it very much. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Ross | 12/5/2013

    " Read part of this while crashing on a friend's couch in Wash, DC. Now that Franken has officially reclaimed Wellstone's senate seat for the DFL, the big question is: what is he going to do about ATM fees? "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Vinita | 11/21/2013

    " So funny....and particular interesting now given his seat in the Senate. I definitely enjoyed the first two-thirds of the book more. Journal entries are hilarious! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jeff | 11/12/2013

    " There was a span of a few months where I thought Franken was hilarious, but it's since lapsed. This was my favorite of his books. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Thenerdmom | 11/6/2013

    " A seriously stupid book. Almost didn't review it because I can't stand to see it on my shelf. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Ellis | 11/4/2013

    " The main character wins the presidency based on a platform of getting rid of ATM fees. (Do you think that is weaker than a platform of "a noun, a verb, and 9/11"? [Joe Biden about Rudi Giuliani]) His campaign was partially funded by a phone sex line. This doesn't seem too far off. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Robert | 10/24/2013

    " This spoof is absolutely picture perfect. I loved it from go to whoa. I would like to live in Minnesota just so I can vote for Al. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jon Feeley | 10/20/2013

    " Al Franken's fictitious run for president on a platform consisting of no atm fees. Hilarious. Definitely a good book to get your hands on seeing as Al is running for senator in Minnesota. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 J.R. | 9/23/2013

    " I listen to this every presidential election year. Extremely funny. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rebekka Istrail | 9/16/2013

    " Funny but insubstantial. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Nyla | 9/11/2013

    " I love Al but this book was a great disapointment. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Lee Istrail | 3/14/2013

    " Brilliant satire of one-note politicians. High ATM fees? That's enough of a platform for me. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Adam | 2/4/2013

    " Dated, but funny. I liked the running jokes about drug use the best. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Brendan Nee | 1/3/2013

    " I found this in a used book store in Vietnam. It was not as funny as other Franken books such as Lies and the Lying Liars. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jennifer | 7/19/2012

    " I enjoyed this book. Al Franken is truly funny. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Scott Groth | 5/8/2012

    " One of the funniest books of all time. How he ever got elected after writing this... "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Camilla | 2/24/2012

    " The first politician that can say "NO MORE ATM FEES" has my vote as does this book...very funny, and what a campaign, more democrats need Al Franken's campaign advisers. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Cathia | 1/10/2012

    " Very silly, but still fun. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Alex | 7/10/2011

    " i think this may be the funniest book i've ever read. franken makes up a story of how he runs for president in 2000, and somehow beats al gore in the primary on the way to victory, not without the help of his drunken brother otto and a few other unlikely advisors. stupid, but hilarious. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Margot | 7/2/2011

    " The plot of this book is predicated on the idea that Al Franken won the 2000 presidential election. Moderately humorous compared to his other books. It's much funnier when he's dealing with "reality" than complete fiction. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Justin K. Rivers | 3/29/2011

    " A good satire of 1990's political campaigns. It seems a bit dated now, but is still funny. It's a shame though that Franken's book came out before the Gore/Bush election debacle, and rest of the circus surrounding the Bush years. Make's the late 90's seem strangely innocent. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Will | 3/21/2011

    " Very funny. While Franken's other books are polemics, this one's basically a novel, so I think it ages better as issues and personalities change. I'll note that Jen also thinks it's very funny, and she is pretty apolitical. "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Thenerdmom | 1/6/2011

    " A seriously stupid book. Almost didn't review it because I can't stand to see it on my shelf. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Robert | 9/28/2010

    " This spoof is absolutely picture perfect. I loved it from go to whoa. I would like to live in Minnesota just so I can vote for Al. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Scott | 9/10/2010

    " One of the funniest books of all time. How he ever got elected after writing this... "

  • 1 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 51 out of 5 Nyla | 3/21/2010

    " I love Al but this book was a great disapointment. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Justin | 10/25/2009

    " A good satire of 1990's political campaigns. It seems a bit dated now, but is still funny. It's a shame though that Franken's book came out before the Gore/Bush election debacle, and rest of the circus surrounding the Bush years. Make's the late 90's seem strangely innocent. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kaethe | 9/17/2009

    " To my delight, Franken has turned out to be a much better politician than most, and certainly better than this satire would have suggested. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Will | 8/11/2009

    " Very funny. While Franken's other books are polemics, this one's basically a novel, so I think it ages better as issues and personalities change. I'll note that Jen also thinks it's very funny, and she is pretty apolitical. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Rebecca | 7/10/2009

    " The son of a daughter of a son and daughter of immigrants. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Vinita | 7/8/2009

    " So funny....and particular interesting now given his seat in the Senate. I definitely enjoyed the first two-thirds of the book more. Journal entries are hilarious! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jennifer | 6/22/2009

    " I enjoyed this book. Al Franken is truly funny. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jeff | 11/15/2008

    " There was a span of a few months where I thought Franken was hilarious, but it's since lapsed. This was my favorite of his books. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Camilla | 7/31/2008

    " The first politician that can say "NO MORE ATM FEES" has my vote as does this book...very funny, and what a campaign, more democrats need Al Franken's campaign advisers. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Dan | 5/11/2008

    " Hey, Al's running for the Senate this year.
    I need to reread this book again. You gotta
    love a candidate who's main platform is to
    eliminate ATM fees. Al and his fictional
    brother are hilarious.

    This is some Al's best work.
    Go Al! Obama 08. Hillary 16. Al 20. "

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About the Author
Author Al Franken

Al Franken is the author of several #1 New York Times bestsellers and is a two-time spoken word Grammy Award winner. A long-time comedy writer who rose to prominence as one of the original Saturday Night Live writers in the 1970s, he also won five Emmy Awards for his work on SNL.