Fighting for the Progressive Center in the Age of Trump

by Joseph M. Hoeffel


Americans are frustrated by dysfunctional government, detest the endless bickering and excessive partisanship in Washington, DC, and just want their government to work and improve the quality of life for all. How can U.S. citizens take action to move toward that goal?

Print Flyer
Cover image for Fighting for the Progressive Center in the Age of Trump

August 2017


Pages 164
Volumes 1
Size 6 1/8x9 1/4
Topics Current Events and Issues/Politics and Government
  Politics, Law, and Government/General

A dedicated politician who has served as a congressman and state legislator defines the formidable challenge for progressives after the November 2016 election—and explains how to bring back leaders focused on working in the broad center of politics in order to get things done for the people.

How did Donald Trump become president? According to author Joseph M. Hoeffel, a former congressman, state legislator, and county commissioner, Trump's unprecedented ascension to the highest seat in the country happened because of the American people's frustration with the endless fighting within our dysfunctional government, and because Trump promised change. Now what? What is next for progressives?

Fighting for the Progressive Center in the Age of Trump offers a manifesto specifically for opposing the Trump agenda and presents a viable game plan for advocating progressive ideas while also demanding fiscal responsibility and clearly rejecting political extremes. Readers will understand how regaining ground for liberal and progressive thinkers will require winning public support, which will depend on fighting to reestablish the political center with policies that are socially liberal and fiscally responsible. The culmination of decades of political experience, this book offers progressive proposals for championing government reform, balancing the budget, investing in people, maintaining international alliances, standing up for progressive convictions, and promoting sweeping plans to benefit every American, including establishing Medicare for all. This is a rousing call to arms for progressives to fight for the progressive center as the best way to overcome the policies of Donald Trump.


  • Makes a strong case for why progressives must fight for the political center of America's civic arena in the battle with those who put Donald Trump in the White House
  • Explains how the path to success for progressives requires winning public support for the progressive agenda by promoting socially liberal and fiscally responsible policies as well as by rejecting rigid ideologies
  • Provides invaluable insights from the highly credible and experienced perspective of a politician with decades of experience
Author Info

Joseph M. Hoeffel, JD, is a former congressman, state legislator, and county commissioner from Pennsylvania. Hoeffel holds a bachelor of arts degree in English from Boston University and a juris doctor degree from Temple University School of Law. He is author of The Iraq Lie: How the White House Sold the War. In his suburban Philadelphia, PA, community, Hoeffel was the first Democrat elected in 60 years to the State House, the first Democrat ever re-elected to Congress, and the first Democrat to chair the Montgomery County Board of Commissioners.



"Clear and well within the mainstream, this book gives centrists disillusioned with the Trump phenomenon a ray of hope. Summing Up: Highly recommended. General readers; lower-division undergraduates through faculty."Choice


"Joe Hoeffel is the genuine article. He's run for and held public office, at the county and country levels. He's won and lost elections. He's dealt with the real voters with real problems. He knows what matters to people. As someone who grew up and went to school near him, I know these challenges. People don't have time for all the polarization and demonization out there today. The time has come for political parties to get serious. Joe Hoeffel's book shows that he's way ahead of them. If the Democrats are smart they'll read this book."—Chris Matthews, Anchor of MSNBC's Hardball

"When I joined the Congress in 2001, Joe Hoeffel stood out as a thoughtful, insightful Democrat, with a rare gift for communicating smart, progressive policies, and the even rarer gift of knowing how to win in the toughest districts. His newest book, Fighting for the Progressive Center in the Age of Trump, finds him as politically astute as ever. As Democrats move forward from the disaster of the 2016 election, Joe makes a timely case for policies and a message that can rise above our broken politics and get down to the business of governing."—Adam B. Schiff, U.S. Congressman from California

"To truly make America even greater, Joe has put forward an agenda that is progressive and prioritizes jobs, health care, and a better quality of life for our hard-working families. We miss Joe on Capitol Hill, but this book makes clear that his leadership to Pennsylvania and America is far from finished."—Edward Markey, U.S. Senator from Massachusetts

"Fighting for the Progressive Center speaks to what Americans want from government, and offers prescriptions for the pressing issues of the day— health care, economic development, Social Security, education reform." —Tom Udall, U.S. Senator from New Mexico

"Hoeffel puts into words what so many of us wished for last election day—the requirements for a progressive candidate we could vote for. This book outlines how government has a valuable role to play in our society without dominating society, how our compassion toward each other, expressed through single-payer health care and a social safety net, is the answer America needs, not simple appeals to ideology and party memes."—Peter Van Buren, Author, Ghosts of Tom Joad: A Story of the 99 Percent

"Joe Hoeffel's book speaks to America's character when ‘We the People' are at our best: the individual pursuit of happiness properly aligned with the common good. Joe recognizes that we are in a fight for the very soul of America—where we are united despite our differences in facing our challenges—and therefore his policy ideas are principled compromises without compromising one's principles. He eschews party or politics as ever being above the nation, recognizing that it is to the people leaders owe their first allegiance. It is the exact approach that our countrymen and women are demanding from today's leaders, and his book shows the way."—Joe Sestak, Rear Admiral, USN (Ret.) and former U.S. Congressman from Pennsylvania

"At a time when progressive and other reasonable Americans are desperately searching for ways to regain the upper hand in the face of the insanity of Donald Trump, Joe Heoffel offers a smart, sensible, and insightful roadmap for us to seize the initiative and lead towards the future. Joe's experience in various levels of government shines through brightly. He's been there, he's done that, and he knows what it will take for us to do it again. You want to know how to appeal to a broader swath of voters? Read Joe's book. It's a great, fun read. And I truly believe we will look back on Fighting for the Progressive Center in the Age of Trump as one of the seminal books of our troubled times."—Daylin Leach, Pennsylvania State Senator, President of Americans for Democratic Action

"How to fix America's broken politics? This savvy guide from a progressive centrist, featuring socially liberal and fiscally responsible policies, points the way. It's doable, people."—Carla Seaquist, HuffPost

Look Inside

Other Titles of Interest

Roots to Power cover imageA Liberal Tool Kit cover imageThe Middle Class Fights Back cover image
The Strange Death of Liberal America cover imageThe Decline and Fall of the U.S. Economy cover image

Product Search

Product Search

Publication Year



Need Help? Try our Search Tips