The New New Deal
The New New Deal. The Hidden Story of Change in the Obama Era.

New York Times Bestseller


In a riveting account based on new documents and interviews with over 400 sources on both sides of the aisle, award-winning reporter Michael Grunwald reveals the vivid story behind President Obama’s $800 billion stimulus bill, one of the most important and least understood pieces of legislation in the history of the country. Grunwald’s meticulous reporting shows how the stimulus, though reviled on the right and the left, helped prevent a depression while jump-starting the president’s agenda for lasting change. As ambitious and far-reaching as FDR’s New Deal, the Recovery Act is a down payment on the nation’s economic and environmental future, the purest distillation of change in the Obama era.


The stimulus has launched a transition to a clean-energy economy, doubled our renewable power, and financed unprecedented investments in energy efficiency, a smarter grid, electric cars, advanced biofuels, and green manufacturing. It is computerizing America’s pen-and-paper medical system. Its Race to the Top is the boldest education reform in U.S. history. It has put in place the biggest middle-class tax cuts in a generation, the largest research investments ever, and the most extensive infrastructure investments since Eisenhower’s interstate highway system. It includes the largest expansion of anti-poverty programs since the Great Society, lifting millions of Americans above the poverty line, reducing homelessness, and modernizing unemployment insurance. Like the first New Deal, Obama’s stimulus has created legacies that last: the world’s largest wind and solar projects, a new battery industry, a fledgling high-speed rail network, and the world’s highest-speed Internet network.


Michael Grunwald goes behind the scenes—sitting in on Cabinet meetings, recounting the secret strategy sessions where Republicans devised their resistance to Obama—to show how the stimulus was born, how it fueled a resurgence on the right, and how it is changing America. The New New Deal shatters the conventional Washington narrative, and it will redefine the way Obama’s first term is perceived.



“As entertaining a policy wonk drama as you’re likely to find….The New New Deal is a worthy effort to set the record straight.” read more

– Rick Holmes, MetroWest Daily News

“I recently finished reading Michael Grunwald’s excellent book, The New New Deal. Grunwald is not only a crisp and engaging writer, he is also a blunt one.” read more

– Francis Wilkinson, Bloomberg View

“The Swamp has been a game-changer in the world of ideas. Even more so will be Grunwald’s new book. While convincingly countering prevailing notions of the Obama administration, The New New Deal manages to be just plain fascinating reading…While intellectually exciting and boldly eye-opening, The New New Deal rests most of all on the author’s passion for detail; his ability to observe meaningful patterns; and his alert, often brilliant, and always penetrating prose.” read more

– Philip Jason, Florida Weekly

The New New Deal is one of the two best books ever written about government.” read more

– Mark Schmitt, The National Memo

“A terrific book…Hugely important…Grunwald’s account explains how things work and don’t work in Washington….These are the kinds of stories we should have been reading all along.” read more

–Steven Brill, Reuters columnist

The New New Deal is an “exhaustively reported and authoritative assessment of the Recovery Act.”” – read more

Financial Times

“Exceptional…The single best book on the inner workings of the Obama administration…In exhaustive detail, Grunwald points out how everything you think you know about the stimulus is wrong…Grunwald’s book should be required reading for undecided voters (as well as everyone else).” – read more

The Guardian

“Meticulous…Grunwald lays out in shocking detail how the Republican leadership decided early and wholeheartedly not to cooperate with the new president…The New New Deal is the most interesting book that has been published about the Obama administration. Even Republicans should read it.” read more

The Economist

“Michael Grunwald’s fascinating book, The New New Deal, is bound to be a lasting word on Barack Obama’s presidency…Grunwald peppers this Washington drama with dialogue and characters in action, which makes it a rollicking good read…It’s a brave stance he’s taking, all alone out there, but he defends it well.”

US News

“FIRST LOOK – ONE OF THE YEAR’S DEEPEST BOOKS — “The NEW New Deal: The Hidden Story of Change in the Obama Era,” by Michael Grunwald (@MikeGrunwald) – TIME senior national correspondent, author of “The Swamp: The Everglades, Florida, and the Politics of Paradise,” and alumnus of WashPost and Boston Globe – out Aug. 14 from Simon & Schuster – Grunwald explains why little-covered policy choices embedded in the stimulus law will long outlast this presidency: The “notional package” that Jason Furman, now principal deputy director of the White House’s National Economic Council, outlined for his boss during the transition included the crucial line, “Stimulus as down payment on long-term goals.” – read more –

– Mike Allen – Politico

“There’s plenty here for everyone to get aflutter about all over again in this riveting account of President Obama’s stimulus bill. Grunwald, a Time magazine senior correspondent, provides captivating background history on the stimulus and how it may prove to be a far greater deal than the one FDR famously launched.”

Chicago Tribune

The New New Deal shatters the conventional Washington narrative and it will redefine the way Obama’s first term is perceived.” – read more

FDL Book Salon

“Assiduously researched and wonderfully written, Grunwald has given future historians the ultimate factual baseline from which to draw conclusions and analyze policy for decades to come.

The New New Deal is a gift to policy wonks and casual political observers alike.”– read more –

Jed Morey – Long Island Press

“Tons of positive buzz for TIME senior national correspondent Michael Grunwald’s stimulus book, which drops Aug. 14th, perfectly timed for the final leg of the presidential campaign.”

Ben White – Politico

“A cogent reality check of President Obama’s Recovery Act….A pointed, in-the-trenches study whose thrust will be borne out with time.”


“Critics of ARRA will not agree with everything in this book, but putting mood affiliation aside for a moment, the writing, research, and conception of the work are all excellent.”

Tyler Cowen –

“A must-read book.”

“I’ve got my copy of Michael Grunwald’s new book on the making of stimulus, The New New Deal, and there are a lot of juicy nuggets in it. In particular, it may shed new light on the degree to which Republicans may have decided to deny Obama all cooperation for the explicit purpose of rendering his presidency a failure.”

Greg Sargent – Washington Post