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Friday, March 26, 2004

You Too Can Run For President -- Sorta
A new "reality" TV show called American Candidate will offer 12 regular Americans the chance to present themselves to the rest of us as someone "we'd like to see run" for president. Looks to me like anyone actually running is ineligible for the show.

Interesting how entertainment reality campaigns may actually become more accurate than real world campaigns. On the TV show, viewers will have the opportunity to hear straight from the candidate's mouths what they're all about. Presumably, we'll get to hear from all 12 candidates equally, unlike real campaigns where we hear a lot more from candidates backed by big money. And, rather than holding one winner take all election, where one candidate might win with less than a majority of votes, the field will be gradually winnowed with each show, ensuring a final runoff between just two candidates.

Clearly, the show's producers will be making the initial screen on applicants to narrow the field down to 12 contestants. But, it's likely that the producers will pick a greater level of political diversity than the real world big money donors who winnow the field of candidate that can really run based on who they choose to give money to. So, viewers are likely to have more appealing choices in the American Candidate election than voters do in our real world elections. What's more, it will be interesting to see if we get more useful information about candidates from the show's content than we will get from the mudslinging ads put out by the real world candidates and the various special interest groups.

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