Sara Fitzgerald

Guest blog: Michigan Republican presidential primary edition

by Emily February 28, 2012

Guest blogger Sara Fitzgerald is the author of Elly Peterson: “Mother” of the Moderates, a biography of one of the highest ranking women in the Republican Party that was published by the Press in hardcover in 2011. The paperback edition of Elly Peterson is available next month. As this year’s Michigan Republican presidential primary approaches, the outcome for native-son Mitt Romney is still far from certain—despite his apparent advantages in fund-raising and organization. However, a little-known story about the 1976 Michigan primary underscores the importance of good staff work in a national campaign. It turns out that in the spring […]

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Press author Sara Fitzgerald and the subject of her award-winning biography, Elly Peterson, offer insights into how Mitt Romney’s mother’s 1970 Senate run influenced him in today’s New York Times

by Emily February 24, 2012

In a front-page article, The New York Times examines Lenore Romney—former First Lady of Michigan, and mother to Mitt—and explores how her experiences, views, and personality traits helped shape the current candidate for the Republican presidential nomination. In doing so, the Times looks to Elly Peterson, one of the highest-ranking women in the Republican Party and a confidante to both Lenore and Governor George Romney, and the subject of the 2012 Michigan Notable Book award-winning biography Elly Peterson: “Mother” of the Moderates by Sara Fitzgerald. The Times quotes both Fitzgerald and Peterson, who passed away in 2008. A dedicated supporter […]

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Modern politicans aren’t the first to verbally stumble, ‘Elly Peterson’ author writes

by University of Michigan Press September 1, 2011

Sara Fitzgerald, a former Washington Post journalist, is author of Elly Peterson: ‘Mother’ of the Moderates. Will a statement made by a tired politician at the end of a long day of campaigning help define the 2012 presidential race? Michele Bachmann placing the “shot heard ‘round the world” in New Hampshire instead of Massachusetts? Rick Perry labeling the Federal Reserve chairman’s management of the economy as “treasonous?” Mitt Romney’s response to a heckler that “corporations are people, too?” Romney knows very well the consequences of making a statement that comes to be defined as a “campaign gaffe.” Forty-four years (and […]

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Moderates, the debt ceiling, and the future of the Republican Party: Sara Fitzgerald, author of ‘Elly Peterson,’ weighs in

by University of Michigan Press July 21, 2011

A couple of months ago, The Washington Post mused, in a front-page story on the presidential campaign of Jon Huntsman Jr., “Can a Republican moderate survive?” I smiled when I saw the headline because you might think I was crazy to set out to write a book that would be titled Elly Peterson: “Mother” of the Moderates.  It’s not as if the moderates are holding a national convention, with chapters in every state and city these days! The current Republican establishment is not very interested in “moderates,” and Democrats are not very interested in things that are labeled “Republican.” And […]

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Vodcast with Sara Fitzgerald, author of “Elly Peterson: Mother of the Moderates”

by Bridget June 15, 2011

This is a vodcast with Sara Fitzgerald, the author of the forthcoming University of Michigan Press title, Elly Peterson: “Mother” of the Moderates. It chronicles the life and political history of Elly Peterson, one of the highest ranking women in the Republican Party. In 1964 she ran for a Michigan seat in the U.S. Senate and became the first woman to serve as chair of the Michigan Republican Party. During the 1960s she grew disenchanted with the increasing conservatism of her party, united with other feminists to push for the Equal Rights Amendment and reproductive choice, battled Phyllis Schlafly to prevent her […]

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