World Trade Organization photo (cc): WTO www.flickr.com/photos/world_trade_organization/4999622562/Just weeks before the national election, nearly 2000 Americans in communities around the country from Seattle to Pittsburgh and Cleveland to Houston, joined together in a common deliberation about what’s at stake for the nation as they approach the polls.

This democratic dialogue is the product of an unprecedented local and national cooperation among community organizations, By the People: America and the World, and the Public Broadcasting System (PBS). It will focus on two key national challenges – maintaining both national security and American jobs in the global economy – with the ideas at issue coming from the campaigns and surrounding political discourse. The deliberations, held almost simultaneously in 17 communities

[Albuquerque, NM; Baton Rouge, LA; Boise, ID; Charlottesville, VA; Cleveland, OH; Detroit, MI; Houston, TX; Kansas City, MO; Lexington, KY; Lincoln, NE; Miami, FL; New Haven, CT; Pittsburgh, PA; Rochester, NY; San Diego, CA; Seattle, WA; and St. Louis, MO] and each covered by local PBS stations as well as other media, will be complemented by “Time To Choose: A By the People Election Special,“ a national PBS broadcast, produced by MacNeil-Lehrer Productions with station contributions.