Photo by Janet Donovan
Neal Simon
Neal Simon

“Why would anybody want to be in politics these days?” Hollywood on the Potomac asked the author of Contract to Unite America Neal, Simon at a book party in his honor at the home of Juleanna Glover & Christopher Reiter in Washington, DC co-hosted by Carl Cannon of Real Clear Politics. “Well, this is part of what the book’s about, particularly with our current system. I think most people start off with good intentions but if you want to be in office and you want to remain in office, you’re forced into one camp or the other. Every incentive pushes you there. So I think most people in our government actually are good people who are just responding to bad incentives.”

Simon ran for office “because I feel like the system is so broken. I would talk about it at my kitchen table all the time with my kids and talk about it with a lot of people around me. And I was encouraged to run and it felt like I had an opportunity to maybe make a difference. I knew I was a long shot from the start, but I really ran on a set of principles of trying to make our government function better than it does today.”