In this week’s A Reagan Forum we bring you American speechwriter Mark Salter, who joined us in conversation on December 7, 2020, for his brand-new book, The Luckiest Man: Life with John McCain.

Governor and Mrs. Reagan first came to know John McCain as a returning prisoner of war whose POW bracelet they had worn. That bracelet has been on display in the Reagan Library since its opening in 1991. In the years after, he became a deeply respected and cherished personal friend. Senator McCain was an inspiring risk-taker. Time and again, he demonstrated his willingness to sacrifice for his country and his beliefs. From his extraordinary courage in a Hanoi dungeon to his practice of putting principle over political expediency, he consistently modeled character and conviction.

Mark Salter’s Luckiest Man is a deeply personal and candid remembrance of the late Senator John McCain from one of his closest and most trusted confidants, friends, and political advisors who worked with the Senator on several nonfiction books as well as on political speeches, and who also served as his chief of staff. During today’s conversation with Reagan Foundation and Institute Executive Director John Heubusch, Mark Salter discusses his new book, which covers all the major events of McCain’s life while also introducing aspects of the man that the public rarely saw and hardly knew.

Woven throughout this narrative is also the story of Salter and McCain’s close relationship, including how they met, and why their friendship stood the test of time in a political world known for its fickle personalities and frail bonds.  The capstone to Salter’s intimate and decades-spanning time with the Senator, The Luckiest Man is the authoritative last word on the stories McCain was too modest to tell himself and an influential life not soon to be forgotten. Let’s listen.

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