The Czech Authentic People's Candidate

Abby Zimet

Meet Vladimír Franz, artist, composer, professor, lawyer, full-body tattooist (though he removed his piercings) and now - following in the tradition of the renowned Václav Havel - presidential candidate in Czech Republic's upcoming election, the first since a new law passed allowing people to nominate and vote directly for president. In a mock election, students already voted in Franz citing his stands against traditional politics' cronyism, corruption and corporate ties.

“We live in a country where we have a system and the model works, to a greater, sometimes lesser degree. But it works. The problems, the way I see it, are in human failure. Voters choose politicians to guide the country, but many of them have largely become interested only in themselves and in their own benefit and don’t care about the state. So I see the problem as a ‘moral’ one, not structural.”

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