A blogger to rule them all

A top US blogger is determined to prove that the road to political success starts online. Judd Legum is running for office, and he's confident his wide network of 'virtual' friends will make all the difference.

Blogging has given the mainstream media a run for its money. But now, could the traditional path to political success also be facing a revolution?

The first nationally known blogger running for political office, Legum founded the Thinkprogress blog back in 2005. It has become one of the most influential liberal news sources, and even helped to bring the Democratic Party into power with the presidential election of Barack Obama.

Could the transition from virtual to real world conquest be another trend he will spearhead? Legum is already collecting donations online for his 2010 campaign in Maryland. Barack Obama received record amounts of money in the same way.

“At first, bloggers were viewed as people in their basements in pajamas, writing about their feelings. and then it became more mainstream. I think part of that process is for someone who’s involved in blogging to take it to the next step, and stop just commenting and reporting, and get involved themselves, and that’s what I hope to do,” Legum says.

And being a top blogger arms Legum with a built-in network that he’s not afraid to use.

“If something happens in the campaign, and I get attacked, or if something untrue is said about me, I know I’ll have friends that will be able to back me up and get my message out there,” he adds.

But people on the streets of Washington have mixed feelings about bloggers entering the political field. While some tend to trust them more, to others they “don’t seem as independent as their forum would lead you to believe they are."