People Power

October 1, 2019  • Institute Staff

In May, the Aspen Wye Fellows hosted Michael Steele—former chair of the Republican National Committee and an Institute–Rodel fellow in public leadership—for its capstone event. Steele brought a welcome blend of candor regarding current US political strife and idealism that the nation can come together in contentious times. Although a turbulent and unruly political landscape marked by extreme partisanship and fiery rhetoric has run roughshod over the body politic the past few years, Steele suggested, America’s “we the people” principle will always advance the nation in trying times. “‘We the people,’” he said, “is how Americans have always righted wrongs and moved the country forward as a democracy of the people, for the people.” Steele added that despite rampant polarization he is optimistic about US voter engagement in 2020.