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May 26, 2015 11:25 AM

Sen. Mitch McConnell working on memoir

The Associated Press

NEW YORK (AP) Sen. Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader, is working on a memoir.

The Kentucky Republican told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he planned to tell both his personal story, including overcoming polio as a child in Alabama, and the story of his long career in public life.

"It's hard for me to believe it's been four decades in politics," McConnell, 73, said during a telephone interview, adding that the book "gives you an opportunity to convey the lessons you've learned over the years."

Known as one of Washington's savviest politicians, McConnell has given his book the working title, "The Long Game," a reference to his ability to prevail as a legislator and as a political candidate. He was first elected to the Senate in 1984 and has withstood various challenges, including a tough primary against conservative businessman Matt Bevin in 2014.

Asked if he would write about some of his political rivals, from President Barack Obama to his Democratic counterpart in the Senate, Minority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, McConnell said the book would be a "candid assessment of the people I've worked with and negotiated with and some of the challenges and opportunities we've had over some 30 years in the Senate."

Talks with publishers are expected to take place over the summer, and McConnell does not yet have a release date in mind. He will be represented by Washington attorney Robert Barnett, whose clients have included Obama and such Republicans as former President George W. Bush and former Vice President Dick Cheney.

McConnell said he will have assistance on the book, which he has begun, and that one reason he's waited this long has been the relentless pace of being Senate minority leader from 2007-2015 and now majority leader after Republicans regained power in the Senate in the 2014 elections.

"This job I've had in the past eight years is like standing in front of a fire hose; it just keeps coming at you," he said. "You tend not to have a lot of time for reflection."


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