How to Win an Election: 9 Political Books that will Help You Master a Political Campaign

How to Win an Election: 9 Political Books that will Help You Master a Political Campaign

recently I was contacted by a young
candidate who plans to run for office in Romania. Bright. Articulate. Feet on the ground. A
man who already knows what he wants to accomplish if he wins. During our first conversation he asked
me a very good question… what book should he
read to better understand the art of political combat… books that inform, inspire, motivate- ones that will keep him in the company
of the better angels? I’ll share with you
what I shared with him. Nobody should run for public office
without first reading ‘The Art of War’ by Sun Tzu. It’s the Bible of warfare, any kind, be it politics, real war,
athletics, or competition in the marketplace. I
once did a series of lectures at the New York military academy and noticed that many of the cadets
carried the book to class. ‘The Prince’ by Machiavelli, is also
imperative. The book contains useful and very
practical advice on determining your route to power, how to conquer and hold new conquests, how to deal with internal insurrection, create new alliances and maintain power. Then there are a series of books about
figures that have profoundly affected the United States whose stories are worth reading and
remembering. Three books by Robert Caro on Lyndon
Johnson. The ‘Path to Power’, ‘Master of the Senate’, and ‘The Passage of Power’. The books are full of lessons about acquiring power, keeping it,
inventing it, pretending you have it when you don’t
and summoning the grit to win when losing is not an
option. There is Craig Shirley’s book about
Ronald Reagan’s multi-year effort to bend the Republican Party to his will, and his one electoral defeat en route to
the White House provides a compelling story of
determination, grit and iron will- all essential commodities in political
combat. Two books about one of my favorite
American Politicians- Robert Kennedy. Few senators have so
profoundly influenced so many generations of people, a man still regarded as a hero by those who knew him. ‘Robert Kennedy and His Times’ by Arthur Schlesinger, and
‘Robert Kennedy’ by Evan Thomas are both entertaining and
worthy reads about an iconic figure. Finally, a book by Dick Morris, Power Plays’. Dick is a prolific writer and an authority on convincing voters to
give you the power to govern the way they live and keeping it once you have it. There are
other books I could recommend. Feel free to email me at if you’d like other recommendations. And stay tuned for more on the art to
being a good candidate for public office Visit my website, subscribe to my
YouTube page, share this video with your friends and
be sure to get a copy of my free book: The 10 Worst Mistakes that Candidates
Make. I’m Jay Townsend

21 thoughts on “How to Win an Election: 9 Political Books that will Help You Master a Political Campaign

  1. Its good to see jay Townsend making more YouTube videos. Why have so few people watched his half hour tutorials, especially with the number of comically mismanaged campaigns that we see today? I personally feel that for the beginning candidate with good ideas but who lacks the basic understanding of how to manage a campaign Jay Townsend is more valuable then the art of war or the prince. Please keep making politics free and accessible for the common person both here and around the world.

  2. In this brief video, I review a few books that are essential readings for any candidate considering a run for Public office. From classics like 'Art of War' by Sun Tzu and ‘The Prince' by Machiavelli to more modern books about political figures that profoundly affected the way we live.

    Feel free to email me at to share your own ideas on books that you have enjoyed, or if you’d like additional suggestions from my library.

  3. I have a question to run for president is it better to have political experience and have your name very well known before running? does that help

  4. Mr.Townsend,

    Thank you for your informational videos. Is there any way for the campaign I work for to contact you?

  5. This “fetching lobon only” (Google it) is an excellent spot to learn new books. No mistakes No faults.easy to go. Book fanatics will absolutely discover this source beneficial. The choice of books is very intensive. You could have plenty of things to learn about.

  6. hi jay townsend …i'm abdul from pakistan i'm 22 year old,.. my question is that how should i start up my political carrier what will u suggest me ?? now i completed my Bachelors degree from university as a computer engineer but my passion is also in politics
    i'll wait for ur reply thanks

  7. Art of War – Suntz Zu
    The Prince – Machiavelli
    The Path to Power –
    Master of the Senate –
    The Passage of Power –
    Robert Kennedy and his times
    Robert Kennedy – Evan Thomas
    Power Plays – Dick Morris

  8. I wish i could change peoples minds , people in my country are fully brain washed , they don't know what the crock government does behind them and they keep support and vote for them

  9. Hello Mr Townsend, I am currently 16 and want to run for public office when I am a bit older. I am fairly sure that I can win the local elections to the schoolboard etc. but I dont think that I can go higher up the ladder of politics because the state in which I live (Pennsylvania) is very liberal and dominated by the Democrats. Do you have any advice how I can persuade a state full of liberal Democrats to vote for a Republican conservative like me since most voters stay loyal to their party??? I also wanted to ask you if there is any good way of getting into Congress or the Senate without having been a important official in my home state or having a lot of money. Thank you for your time.

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