Tampa Bay's Morning Blend


Dan Abrams and "Theodore Roosevelt for The Defense"

Posted: 3:38 PM, Jun 13, 2019
Updated: 2019-06-13 15:38:29-04

Imagine a President of the United States criminally prosecuting media entities with creative use of statutes for publishing something about him that he insisted was false. One who was perennially obsessed with media coverage and yet publicly insulted reporters (and political leaders) he didn't like with specific mocking epithets. One whose brash populist message sold papers and engendered an almost cult like level of support. No, not him, this is what actually happened with our 26th President Teddy Roosevelt.

After his presidency, Roosevelt even sued a newspaper and won. Now in Theodore Roosevelt for The Defense, Dan Abrams and David Fisher tell the largely forgotten story of the 1915 trial where the former president was sued for libel and had to defend himself in front of 12 jurors. Using a full transcript of the trial and real time accounts from the nation's most prestigious newspapers, the authors take us back in time when Roosevelt spent eight days on the stand including a grueling cross examination that questioned the man, the leader, and the legacy he had so carefully crafted.