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Dream of Democracy: What Pols Do {format} {format} 1:37 Barrett Golding & Jonathan Menjivar

What do politcian do?

Broadcast: Sep 6 2004 on NPR Day to DaySeries: Dream of Democracy Subjects: Youth, Public Affairs, Politics

Analysis: Thoughts of college students who are cynical about politics and politicians [DP]

September 6, 2004 from Day to Day

ALEX CHADWICK, host: I'm Alex Chadwick. This is DAY TO DAY.

The presidential campaigns of George Bush and John Kerry have less than two months now to convince us. In Chicago, talking to college kids, producers Jonathan Menjivar and Barrett Golding found that may not be time enough.

Unidentified Woman #1: I'm really political-minded. Like, I almost became a poli-sci major, but I don't really want to be a politician because I don't like politicians. I like to criticize them.

Unidentified Man #1: Politicians? I don't like them.

Unidentified Woman #2: Corrupt.

Unidentified Man #2: Greedy.

Unidentified Woman #2: Deceitful.

Unidentified Man #2: Selfish.

Unidentified Woman #2: Make promises, don't keep them.

Unidentified Man #2: You know, just superficial people.

Unidentified Woman #3: Politicians are all morons.

Unidentified Man #3: Do I trust politicians?

Unidentified Woman #3: Democrat, Republican--I don't really trust any of them.

Unidentified Man #4: What do I think politicians do?

Unidentified Man #5: What do they do?

Unidentified Man #6: Sit on their butt in their offices and try promote theirselves.

Unidentified Woman #4: I think politicians sit around and really talk about laws and legislation.

Unidentified Woman #5: It's hard to say what they're actually going to do once they get into office.

Unidentified Man #7: They are supposed to represent us, carry out our will. Whether that happens or not, that's another story.

Unidentified Woman #6: It's a lot of stuff not getting done that needs to be done or people not being taken care of that need to be taken care of or things being cut that shouldn't be cut.

Unidentified Man #8: It's impossible to get anything done if you have to listen to everybody. To some extent, politicians have to lie. So I think what they do is they try to come up with the most pertinent, most reasonable policy line. But then on the other side they have to find a way to sell it to the country.

Unidentified Woman #7: And it's probably a good thing that there are people who are willing to devote their time to doing that, but I personally wouldn't.

CHADWICK: That piece is part of the series Chicago Matters: Our Next Generation, from Chicago Public Radio.