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Bruce Leggett leaned forward intently, placing his hand on the other man’s shoulder. “So, Dave, can I have your vote?”

His neighbor Dave Crenshaw grinned. “Heck, Bruce, you don’t have to give me the whole song and dance. I know you’re a good guy.” He took out his smart phone and fiddled with it, logging into the centralized electronic voting portal. “I’m your man, Bruce.”

“Great,” Bruce replied, with a blinding grin of his own. He held up a piece of paper with his personalized bar code, and Dave snapped a photo with his phone. Within seconds, Bruce Leggett had been appointed as Dave Crenshaw’s official representative in the Voters’ House, and Dave’s vote transferred to Bruce’s control. That made a total of 73 votes for Bruce. When he voted on new laws, Bruce spoke with the voice of the people.

[UPDATE May 1, 2013: This excerpt is from an early draft of the short story “The Suffrages of the People Being More Free,” which is now published in a collection The Best Congress Money Can Buy: Stories of Political Possibility. You can read the first story for free here, and then buy it if you like. Enjoy!]