Southern exposure 

Street Smarts

Security, Widefield, Fountain, southeastern Colorado Springs ... these aren't considered hotbeds of political activity locally. But talk with people in the area, and you'll find some strong opinions.

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Craig Divine from Fort Carson is in the military

Are you interested in politics? Yes, and I'm getting more interested, because of Obama's budget cuts for the military. A lot of civilian employees I used to work with have lost their jobs.

Have you ever met a politician? Just once, about 14 years ago, when my sister worked for [former Gov.] Bill Owens.

What's your opinion of politics and politicians in general? They're two-faced. What's on the news is different from what's really happening.

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Donna Gines from Widefield is a recent college graduate

What comes to mind when I say the word "politics"? A headache. I'm a Democrat, and the Republicans right now are acting like little kids on a playground trying to outdo each other, and saying how bad the other candidate is.

Do you plan to vote in November? Yes! I've never missed voting in a presidential election since I was old enough to vote.

What's one of the biggest issues for you? The wars. The Republicans seem to be so conflict-oriented. Both my sons served in the military, and they both have PTSD. One of my nephews just enlisted, and I'm really worried about him, too.

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Eric Paul from Fountain is an artist

In general, what's your opinion of politics? My father was a political activist in the '70s, and in the end he thought it was a waste of time. I used to be in a band, and we played politically conscious music. But we're not all on the same level of consciousness.

What's your idea of a perfect politician? JFK, or someone like him. Even Bill Clinton wasn't too bad.

What do you think is the major issue for our nation right now? Economics. People are too into themselves, and they don't want to share.

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Al Williams from Widefield is a small-business owner

Have you ever met any local politicians? I've met [U.S. Rep. Doug] Lamborn, and [former Vice Mayor Richard] Skorman. I'm a Republican, but I like [Gov. John] Hickenlooper.

What do you think is our most pressing local issue? The mayor and City Council in Colorado Springs have to come to terms; they have to work together. Again, it's about how to spend our money.

What about in your own neighborhood? Voter turnout. Sometimes it's only 25 percent.


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