Now that election season is (finally) over, political junkies need another way to entertain themselves during the holiday season. We asked some top players in Washington to recommend the best gifts for the politically obsessed.
NAME: Grover Norquist, president, Americans for Tax Reform
GIFT: Election memorabilia
Washington's infamous purveyor of the anti-tax "pledge" suggests saving campaign souvenirs, particularly those that you can customize: "Herman Cain's 9-9-9 bumper is great, for either your tax reform friends or, if you turn it upside down, your pagan friends." Norquist has his own fair share of memorabilia. "Yeah, I collect buttons," he says. "Old Nixon or Goldwater ones are really cool."
NAME: Jake Tapper, White House Correspondent, ABC News
GIFT: "The Last Lion: Winston Spencer Churchill, Volume 3: Defender of the Realm, 1940-1965" by William Manchester
No political junkie can resist a new tell-all inside story or the latest authoritative biography. Tapper recommends the third and last installment of Manchester's series on Sir Winston Churchill. "The box set is a great gift for the Churchillian in your life," Tapper says.
NAME: Newt Gingrich, author and presidential candidate
GIFT: A Lincoln kit
With Stephen Spielberg's film "Lincoln" a big hit in theaters this fall, Gingrich, a former House speaker, thinks true fans of the 16th president and the legislative process need a complete package. "I'd get them a ticket to go see the film," Gingrich says. "And I'd give them the best books on Lincoln—Gore Vidal's novel, 'Lincoln,' is superb. That way you can immerse yourself in that world of politics, bargaining and deal making."
NAME: Arianna Huffington, editor-in-chief, The Huffington Post
GIFT: A day in the country
The longtime political activist and writer says the best gift after a year of campaign coverage might be a spiritual retreat, away from the daily ups and downs of short-term politics: "A trip to somewhere without WiFi. All junkies need to detox regularly, and having just gotten through an election and with the midterms almost two years away, this is a perfect time to get off the wagon."
NAME: Ben Smith, editor-in-chief, Buzzfeed.com
GIFT: Ghosts of campaigns past
"I'm always partial to swag from forgotten campaigns," says Smith, the man behind Buzzfeed's influential political coverage. "A Thaddeus McCotter For President sign, for instance, will be a great conversation piece for decades to come."
NAME: Amy Walter, political director, ABC News
GIFT: "Victory Lab: The Secret Science of Winning Campaigns" by Sasha Issenberg
Other than taking a long nap to recover from the election, Walter suggests political junkies pick up Sasha Issenberg's book for its study of the new data-driven strategies employed by political campaign teams. "This is a must-read for anyone who wants to understand the modern campaign and how it uses/integrates technology. You will never look at voter turnout the same."
- Arts & Entertainment
- Grover Norquist
- Jake Tapper
- Newt Gingrich