The politics of ‘W-ism’
in The Bush administration, sex and the moral agenda
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This chapter considers the development of George W. Bush's thinking, the ways in which it has been shaped by the need to capture the votes of those with moderate attitudes and the electoral strategies that flow from this. It suggests that, while faith undoubtedly played a role in moulding Bush's public image, the character of his electoral strategy, the nature of the domestic policy initiatives pursued by the administration and the president's approach to moral and cultural issues were shaped by other processes. In particular, ‘W-ism’ was informed and structured by events and developments during the latter half of the 1990s. It was based on close reading of public opinion, particularly of those groupings and constituencies that were pivotal to election victory.

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