But how will the writers vote?

Slate asked a variety of prominent American novelists, ranging from Edwidge Danticat to John Updike, for a frank response to the following question: Which presidential candidate are you voting for, and why? Thirty-one novelists participated, with four for Bush, 24 for Kerry, and three in a category of their own.

Dan Chaon, Amy Tan, John Updike, Jonathan Safran Foer, Rick Moody, Joyce Carol Oates, Orson Scott Card, Diane Johnson, Jonathan Franzen, Judith Guest, Edwidge Danticat, Chang-Rae Lee, Jane Smiley, Lorrie Moore, Robert Ferrigno, Jennifer Egan, Russell Banks, Daniel Handler, Roger L. Simon, George Saunders, Jodi Picoult, A.M. Homes, Thomas Mallon, Gary Shteyngart, Jim Lewis, Vendela Vida, David Amsden, Elizabeth Hardwick, Nicole Krauss, Richard Dooling and Thomas Beller weigh in.

A few of the choicest morsels (in my opinion):

“I’ll vote for John Kerry. His election won’t reverse our nation’s rush to establish a fascist plutocracy, it’s too late for that.” (Russell Banks)

“Richard Nixon, because I found him so fascinating the first time around I’d be curious to see what he could do from the beyond…?” (A.M. Homes)

“Mark me on the Bush side of the ledger, a lonely side for this survey, I’m certain. Most novelists live in their imagination, which is a fine place to be until the bad guys come knock knock knocking. … Kerry will dance the Albright two-step with Kim Jong-il, consult with Sandy Berger’s socks, and kowtow to the U.N. apparatchiks who have done such a fine job of protecting the Cambodians, Rwandans, and the Sudanese. No thanks. No contest.” (Robert Ferrigno)

“Are there really any novelists voting for Bush?” (Lorrie Moore)

(Slate: “Roll Call” [October 11, 2004])