- Almost all of the people featured in "Vote for Me"
-- from candidates to campaign volunteers -- are passionate about
their involvement in politics. Yet the pundits talk constantly
about how American democracy is awash with alienated, apathetic
citizens. What accounts for the disparity in perceptions?
- Citizen-led government is enshrined in our national myths.
North Carolinian private citizen Maggie Lauterer ran for Congress
and found she had to play by the long-established rules of campaign
engagement, including running a negative campaign. Is it possible
for an "ordinary citizen" to run for office these days
and remain relatively ordinary and uncorrupted by politics as
- How do most people choose their elected officials: by their
personalities, their ability to deliver services, or their stands
on important issues? Do we expect different results from different
levels of politicians?
- Governing and legislating involves brokering interests that
may be antithetical to each other. In "Vote for Me",
citizens band together in voting blocs, ethnic coalitions, and
trade associations to fight for what they want. Can groups balance
pragmatism and the moral high ground and still get results?
Submit your answers and comments.