Thursday, Oct. 14, 2010

Kyrsten Sinema

A former Phoenix social worker, Sinema, 34, lobbied on housing, education and tax issues before joining the legislature herself. A third-term Democrat who co-sponsored a bill to bring high-tech jobs to Arizona to bolster its slumping economy, she's running this fall for the state senate.

Who is your political hero/inspiration?
I have great respect for Sandra Day O'Connor. She has broken so many barriers for women in the law, and was a master negotiator and pragmatist in her days on the Supreme Court. She represents what's best about Arizona — seeking practical, common sense solutions to everyday problems.

What's your go-to political blog?
Huffington Post

If you weren't working in politics, what would you be doing?
International relations, with some fashion on the side!

What's the most overlooked issue facing America these days?
I'm very concerned about the tone of politics in recent years. We've seen a decline in civility and bipartisanship, and a rapid increase in hostility between those who have differing opinions. I think this has led to the alienation of the public in governance, which jeopardizes democratic participation. I also have grave concern over the 24 hour media news cycle and how that's helped created an expectation of immediacy in public policy — this encourages public officials to make short term decisions that aren't always good for the long term health of our country.

Where do you see yourself professionally in five years?
I hope to continue serving Arizona in public office, although I'm not sure exactly what that may look like in 5 years.