Faculty Favorites: Books and Movies – Jim Bayless

We asked our faculty and authors to share with us some of their favorite books and movies. Their responses are posted in “Faculty Favorites: Books and Movies.”

Jim Bayless (bio), a veteran legislative and regulatory attorney who has lived in Washington for more than 25 years, shares his favorite books and movies. (You can see some of Jim’s favorite things about living in our nation’s capital here.)

Favorite Books

  • Manhunt, a thrilling, detailed account of the assassination of President Lincoln by John Wilkes Booth and his several co-conspirators, aiders, and abettors and the frenzied chase and capture.
  • Team of Rivals, a masterpiece of how Abe Lincoln prevailed against his much more qualified rivals for the presidential nomination and integrated this extraordinarily accomplished group of political adversaries into his own Cabinet.

Favorite Movies

  • Mr. Smith Goes to Washington-a Frank Capra-produced classic starring Jimmy Stewart and portraying the fundamental role and operation of the U.S. Senate.
  • Advise and Consent (1962)-a classic political novel portraying zealots in the president’s party resorting to blackmail to insure the approval of their nominee for Secretary of State; demonstrates the advise-and-consent role of the U.S. Senate; starring Henry Fonda.
  • The Seduction of Joe Tynan-another portrayal of the ideological and moral conflicts of being a member of the U.S. Senate; straining his already part-time family life. But it could be a big boost to his career, so he takes it on. Starring Alan Alda.
  • No Way Out-a tense thriller starring Kevin Costner and Gene Hackman; a tale of national security and blackmail filmed at the Pentagon and elsewhere around Washington.
  • Executive Action (1973)-A group of powerful and wealthy men hires mercenaries to assassinate John F. Kennedy.
  • All the President’s Men (1976)-True story of how two Washington Post reporters uncovered the Watergate scandal that led to the resignation of President Nixon; starring Dustin Hoffman, Robert Redford.

For more, also see our Political and Government Classics page.

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