The Master of the Game

When he arrived in Washington he didn't have much political experience, but Lincoln had emotional strengths that made him a natural

Lincoln's political resume was meager, his learning derided, and his election considered a stroke of luck. And yet the prairie lawyer from Springfield would emerge the undisputed captain of his distinguished Cabinet, earning the respect of colleagues who had originally disdained him, and become, as Whitman wrote, "the grandest figure yet, on all the crowded canvas of the Nineteenth Century."

As it turned out, unbeknownst to the country at the time, Lincoln was a towering political genius--not because he had mastered the traditional rules of the game, but because he possessed a remarkable array of emotional strengths that are rarely found...

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