The Pundit: How to Identify the Best Candidates for Public Office

The Questions You should Ask About Every Candidate

(December 2015)

Who is backing the candidate? What are their interests?

What kind of legislation has the politician supported? Has the legislation proven to be effective in addressing the stated goal? Has there ever been any deceptive aspects to the legislation? (i.e stealth measures, riders)

Is the politician a hypocrite? Do they live the way they say they want others to live?

Do they communicate without using absolute terms, broad characterizations, personal attacks and threats?

Do they listen and address the concerns of those who may not completely agree with their position?

Has the politician shown evidence of being a compassionate person? Have they ever worked in an occupation that helps others, or have they only dedicated their career to acquiring wealth and power?

Are they capable of working with their opponents, making deals and compromising to achieve a goal?

Do they have a spine? Are they willing to take an unpopular position if they think that it is the right thing to do? Are they willing to take a stand that is against the interests of their financial supporters?

Are they willing to take a stand that is against the interests of the rich and powerful?

Have they ever stood up for the rights or needs of an unpopular or less powerful group?

Are they willing to disagree with others in their political party?

Do they avoid relying on the same old ineffective solutions to problems or do they consider using new approaches?

Are they willing to face inconvenient facts and consider all of the implications of their proposals?

Do they avoid spending too much time with issues that are merely symbolic and have no real-world importance?

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