One of the important details in this trip is to ensure that I hit all eight of the Bureau of Economic Analysis (US Department of Commerce) regions of the US. This will provide the ability to say that the trip has geographic representation with some heft behind it.
The regions, in order that I'll be passing through them, are:
Although I'm not an economist and won't be making any claims about relationships between economic activity and democratic ideas, I think it is useful to have a basic statistical framework in place to capture where I am going and why. Using BEA regions and accompanying data would allow, for example, some potentially interesting "dotted pencil line" comparisons between attitudes and economic activity.
I hope to have conversations with eight to ten individuals in each region. If you've got a network of friends, family or colleagues in any of these areas, please encourage them to sign up at www.searchforamerica.org!