Lessig decides not to run for Congress

The tech-policy activist says he's sure he'd lose.

By Farhad Manjoo
Published February 25, 2008 11:02PM (EST)

Lawrence Lessig is not running for Congress.

In the above video, which he posted to Lessig '08, the law professor and tech-policy activist who said last week that he was thinking of running for Tom Lantos' open House seat says now that he'd probably lose.

Lessig would face Jackie Speier, a Democrat who is enormously popular in the area. A pollster advised Lessig that "there is no possible way" he'd win against her if he ran on his favored issues, changing the funding and ethical foundations of Congress.

And losing, he says, wouldn't be an inspiring start to a movement to change Congress. His run, he says, "would do more harm than good" to such a movement.

In the video, Lessig thanks all those who've called for him to run, and he urges them to sign up to help his cause at Change Congress.

Farhad Manjoo

Farhad Manjoo is a Salon staff writer and the author of True Enough: Learning to Live in a Post-Fact Society.

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