Democracy Forum 3/18/16

Host: Ann Luther, League of Women Voters of Maine    
Engineer: Amy Browne

Issue: Participatory Democracy

Program Topic: Whose Democracy Is It? Wealth and Income Inequality, Money in Politics

Key Discussion Points:
a) The great American experiment in democracy was founded on the ideal of a sovereign people —
government responsive to the will of the people. Does American democracy still serve that ideal?
b) Are policy outcomes today more responsive to wealthy donors than to the majority voters?
c) Is the new populism evident in the current presidential primaries fed by voter frustration with government? Is
money in politics somehow responsible for that frustration?
d) If it’s not practical or even wise to think of eliminating income and power disparities, do we even have a
problem?
e) What are some practical solutions?

Guests:
Mark Schmitt, Director of the Political Reform Program at New America
www.newamerica.org/experts/mark-schmitt/

Tony Corrado, Professor of Government at Colby College
www.brookings.edu/experts/corradoa?view=bio

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