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WHAT IS HATCH’S CHOICE AS READING FOR FRESHMEN?

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When a Capitol Hill newspaper asked some senior lawmakers to recommend books for freshmen to learn how Congress really works, Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, suggested they read - ahem, well - about himself.

Hatch told The Hill newspaper that the best book he could think of on Congress is the new "Leading the Charge: Orrin Hatch and 20 Years of America," by Lee Roderick.The Hill noted that Hatch "showed a flair for self-promotion."

But Paul Smith, Hatch's press secretary, said the book indeed would be a good choice for a freshman. "By reading the book, any new member of Congress could find out how it all runs."

Smith added that it outlines legislative and committee process, and how Hatch feels a chairman should act. "It also gives insight on many behind-the-scenes scenarios on the give-and-take to pass needed legislation or to block bad bills," he said.

Others made recommendations ranging from novels to histories.

Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., recommended a book by his brother, the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Profiles in Courage" by John F. Kennedy, about senators who sacrificed careers for tough votes.

Outgoing House Speaker Tom Foley recommended "Truman," by David McCullough (maybe because Truman had to deal with a Republican Congress?). Incoming House Speaker Newt Gingrich recommended "Radicalism of the American Revolution," by Gordon Wood (maybe foreshadowing a new revolution?).

Incoming House Majority Leader Dick Armey, R-Texas, recommended "Wealth of Nations," by economist Adam Smith. Sen. Ernest Hollings, D-S.C., suggested "Looking at the Sun," by James Fallows.

Rep. Tom Bliley, R-Va., made the most resourceful suggestion for freshmen seeking tools for success: "All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten,' by Robert Fulghum.