Presidential campaigns are our national conversations_the widespread and complex communication of issues, images, social reality, and personas. In 2008, more people participated in the conversation, as voter numbers in every demographic group increased to levels of the 1970s. Here, political communication specialists break down the historic 2008 presidential campaign and go beyond the quantitative facts, electoral counts, and poll results of the election. Factoring in everything from the campaign in popular culture, political cartoons, and the effect of celebrity, the authors look at the early campaign period, the nomination process and conventions, the social and political context, the debates, the role of candidate spouses, candidate strategies, political advertising, and the use of the Internet. This enlightening book shows why more technology doesn't always mean more effective communication and how, as we attempt to make sense of our environment, we collect 'political bits' of communication that comprise our voting choices, worldviews, and legislative desires.