Sam Sanders

As a key member of NPR's election unit, Sam Sanders is covering the intersection of culture, pop culture, and politics in the 2016 election. A mix of breaking news and feature reporting, his work is heard on NPR's flagship news programs and read on NPR.org. Sanders travels the country looking for the stories behind the horserace, catching trends before they're trends, and making politics relatable to people who might not actually like politics. He also cohosts NPR's Politics Podcast, which launched in 2015.

Sanders joined NPR in 2009 as a Kroc Fellow, and since then has worn many hats within the organization including field producer and breaking news reporter. He's spent time at three member stations as well: WUNC in North Carolina, Oregon Public Broadcasting, and WBUR in Boston, as an intern for On Point with Tom Ashbrook.

Sanders graduated from the Harvard Kennedy School in 2009 with a Master's degree in public policy, with a focus on media and politics. He received his undergraduate degree from the University of the Incarnate Word in San Antonio Texas, with a double major in political science and music.

In his free time, Sanders runs, eats bacon, discusses the tortured genius of Kanye West, and continues his love/hate relationship with Twitter.

The list of celebrities-turned-politicians grows longer.

Former child actor Melissa Gilbert is running as a Democrat in Michigan's 8th congressional district against first-term Republican Mike Bishop.

The district covers Lansing and some northern Detroit suburbs, and it's a competitive one. President Obama won it in 2008, but Republican Mitt Romney carried it in 2012.