Thursday, August 6, 2009

'Hottest freshman' congressperson

Politics is certainly changing in this country. Mr. Obama created history by being the first African-American president, Ms. Palin provided the country with some eye candy and entertainment and Mr. Schock is being quite a shocker.

He lives in newspapers as well as men's glamour magazines, he's profiled on CNN as well as MTV, people are interested in his career as well as his personal life and they might have to make a special list for him 'politicians under 30'. We're talking about Aaron Schock. Aaron is a Republican from Illinois and the youngest member of congress. He grew up on a farm, launched his political career at the age of 19 and his leaked scandalous MySpace pics like the ones with him and his six packs and a girl in swimwear are making the customary rounds. Talk about having it all.

I love this story because it sets the path for all the young bees to imagine a career in politics. Young blood in politics comes with many benefits: it gets the youth interested, it lends a much-needed fresh perspective to stale issues and it is just a better deal economically and financially - more productivity without the price tag. And more than anything, the passion and the enthusiasm is usually unprecedented. Back to the shocker. His accomplishments are unique, just like him... or that's what makes him unique. He was elected a member of a school board with 150 schools under it at 19, became VP on the board 2 years later and when most people are trying their luck at internships, he became a school board president at 22. And he received a BS degree along with it. A year later he ran for state representative and became member of Illinois house of representatives. All of his titles usually include the 'youngest member of' phrase. I've seen situations where unqualified people are sometimes promoted to something they can't really handle but not this guy. In just 5 months of joining house of representatives, he authored 11 bills and sponsored 18 bills, all dealing with reforms at one level or another.

No surprises that he's received an unusual amount of coverage for a freshman congressman. And this treatment isn't just based on his age and appearance, but significantly due to his work ethic and how quickly he can bring about a change. One reader poll recently selected him as the "hottest freshman" congressperson.

I can only hope to be the youngest member of something someday besides 'yoga for the elderly' club at a park near me.

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