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February 06, 2008

Globetrotting v. Grassroots


The 2008 presidential campaign kicked into high gear last night. Many young Americans in particular watched the results of Super Tuesday with a newfound level of passion, and many have become engaged actively in the political process for the first time.

Kweku Toure knows what it's like to feel politically inspired and work for a presidential hopeful. Fresh out of college, he was walking the streets of Washington, D.C. handing out resumes. While taking a break from the heat, he wandered into the office of the Reverend Jesse Jackson. That very day he became a volunteer, and that very week led to his dream job: traveling with Jesse Jackson all over the world.

It was a heady taste of national and international politics, but ultimately not enough for Kweku. Two years later, he decided the best way to make real political change was not at the top, but at the bottom, and he left Jackson's office to work at the grassroots level.


hat happens to all those campaign workers when their presidential candidate drops out of the election?

Camille Santochi says it was like breaking up with a boyfriend and never quite healing. She decided to get involved in the 2003 presidential campaign for Dennis Kucinich when she was still in college. She set up a table at U.C. Santa Barbara, handing out bumper stickers and attempting to win over other students to the Kucinich campaign.

The work was much harder than Camille thought it would be. She talks with Dick about how it changed her romanticized view of presidential campaigning - especially after Kucinich decided to leave the race.


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