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Scientists on the Ballot

The political action committee 314 Action is pushing for more scientists to become involved in politics and is supporting those who are running for office, Harper's Bazaar reports.

Shaughnessy Naughton, the founder of 314 Action, tells Harper's Bazaar that many of the issues facing lawmakers and society have their roots in science and technology, such as healthcare reform and climate change. "Our Congress currently has more talk radio hosts than chemists and physicists, and I would posit that the approach scientists take to solving problems would be a much-needed breath of fresh air to the partisan one that has led to much of the gridlock and incivility that has become the norm," she says.

She and her group have been training scientists in the world of politics to boost their chances of success at the ballot box, Harper's Bazaar says. Wired adds that 314 Action has endorsed 74 candidates at the state and local levels for this election cycle. One of those candidates, Kim Schrier, a Democrat is running for Washington's Eighth Congressional District, is in a dead heat with her Republican opponent, Dino Rossi, it says.

However, Science reported in June that, despite scientists' increased interest in pursuing elected office, many did not fare well in their primary races.