All the Way from Yoakum: The Personal Journey of a Political Insider

All the Way from Yoakum: The Personal Journey of a Political Insider

All the Way from Yoakum: The Personal Journey of a Political Insider

All the Way from Yoakum: The Personal Journey of a Political Insider

Synopsis

All the Way from Yoakum tells the story of the long, eventful life of a Jewish "good girl" from small-town Texas who became a remarkable woman of her time and a leading light in Houston and Texas politics.

One of the founders of the modern Republican Party in Texas, Marjorie Meyer Arsht served as a state party committeewoman and was the first Jewish woman to run as a Republican for the state legislature. Becoming active in politics in the 1950s, she was closely involved in the early career of George H. W. Bush.

A member of the prominent Texas family (Meyer, Cohen) that owned Foley Brothers department store and gave Cohen House to Rice University, she recalls the contentious mid-century division in the Jewish community over the issue of Zionism that split congregations and turned friends into bitter antagonists. Formerly president of the Temple Beth Israel Sisterhood, Arsht served as a national spokesperson for a major American anti-Zionist organization.

When she turned seventy, Arsht was working as a speechwriter and high-level assistant in the Department of Housing and Urban Development in Washington while also serving as a regent of Texas Southern University, where she spearheaded a number of important reforms. In addition, she continued to run the small, independent energy development and investment company founded by her late husband.

From her childhood as a member of one of the few Jewish families in small-town Yoakum, Texas, to her years of political activism and social involvement, she offers a moving account of an indomitable spirit, one that will provide both inspiration and an understanding of how the Republican Party came to be the dominant force in Texas politics.
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