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The best ice bucket challenges in politics — in one video

This summer, an icy cold challenge is red hot.

The ice bucket challenge has become a popular way to raise money and awareness for the disease known as Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, or ALS. Basically, you post video of yourself dumping a bucket of ice water over your head and challenge other people to do the same. The people you name have 24 hours to accept or donate money to fight ALS. You can also do both, of course.

Naturally, many elected officials have found themselves suddenly confronted with requests for them to dump a bucket of ice water over their own heads. And many elected officials have replied: sign me up.


Did your favorite politician take the #ALSIceBucketChallenge? Watch Gov. Chris Christie (R-N.J.), Rep. Joe Kennedy (D-Mass.), Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) and many more brave the icy water to raise awareness and money for ALS. (Jackie Kucinich/The Washington Post)

The list of pols who have participated is a long one that includes Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R)former senator Scott Brown (R-Mass.), Rep. Joe Kennedy III (D-Mass.),  Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-Calif.), Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-N.H.) and many others.

On Tuesday, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) posted video of himself taking the challenge. He passed it on to Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), "Tonight Show" host Jimmy Fallon, and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) took the challenge a step further, jumping into ice-cold water in her bathing suit. Oh, and she called on the entire Senate to take the challenge.

But some public figures are decidedly cool on the ice bucket challenge. (We're looking at you, President Obama!) When Ethel Kennedy, the widow of late senator Robert F. Kennedy, challenged the president, he opted for the donation-only approach.

"I had a lot of thoughts on suggestions for who the president could designate to take this challenge, some of whom sit in this room," White House spokesman Eric Schultz told reporters Wednesday. "However, I think we released that the president is going to make a financial contribution instead."

Sean Sullivan has covered national politics for The Washington Post since 2012.



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Sean Sullivan · August 13, 2014

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