Commentary: Value‐Driven Public Policy Likely Requires Value‐Driven Public Servants

Published date01 July 2014
Date01 July 2014
494 Public Administration Review • July | August 2014
Public Administration Review,
Vol. 74, Iss. 4, pp. 494–495. © 2014 by
The American Society for Public Administration.
DOI: 10.1111/puar.12241.
Hank Sheinkopf, who has worked on
an estimated 700 political campaigns on
four continents, comments on public issues
for major media outlets internationally. He is
also a doctoral candidate in political science
at the City University of New York.
Hank Sheinkopf
Sheinkopf Communications
e question for practical politicians has always been
the same: where’s mine?
ose who believe that such a sentiment is only
ref‌l ective of the old-time political machines and
hold strongly to the notion that personal gain has
somehow been replaced with an unbreakable daily
search for the greater good have missed a good deal
of news.
Scandal incessantly headlines the newspapers and
tops the local and national evening news.  e work
of our local legislators is graded by the quality and
size of the pork brought home from state capitals.
ere is a good deal of evidence to suggest that our
representatives in Congress are judged dif‌f erently
than they once were in Richard Fenno’s 1978 classic,
Home Style: House Members in  eir Districts. Fenno
described an adaptation and concern for local culture,
local constituencies, and service. Today, it is all those
things plus acute responses to the polarized environ-
ment in Washington pitting party against party. Since
passage of the Af‌f ordable Care Act (ACA), partisan-
ship has been extreme, but, judging by the actions
of some Democratic U.S. senators now criticizing
the ACA—also called Obamacare—whose constitu-
ents can be described as marginal or swing, survival
and where’s-mine politics are more the case than
not. Survival is the f‌i rst rule, and survival means
Value-Driven Public Policy Likely Requires Value-Driven
Public Servants

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