Joseph Samuel Nye Jr. is an American political scientist. He is the co-founder, along with Robert Keohane, of the international relations theory of neoliberalism, developed in their 1977 book Power and Interdependence. Together with Keohane, he developed the concepts of asymmetrical and complex interdependence. They also explored transnational relations and world politics in an edited volume in the 1970s. More recently, he explained the distinction between hard power and soft power, and pioneered the theory of soft power. His notion of "smart power" became popular with the use of this phrase by members of the Clinton Administration, and more recently the Obama Administration. He is the former Dean of the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University where he currently holds the position of University Distinguished Service Professor. In October 2014, Secretary of State John Kerry appointed Nye to the Foreign Affairs Policy Board. He is also a member of the Defense Policy Board.
Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin is a Russian politician serving as President of the Russian Federation since 7 May 2012, previously holding the position from 2000 until 2008. He was Prime Minister of the Russian Federation from 1999 until 2000, and again from 2008 until 2012. During his second term as Prime Minister, he was the chairman of the ruling United Russia party.
James Warren DeMint is an American writer and politician who was a United States Senator from South Carolina from 2005 to 2013. He is a member of the Republican Party and a leading figure in the Tea Party movement. He previously served as the United States Representative for South Carolina's 4th congressional district from 1999 to 2005. DeMint resigned from the Senate on January 1, 2013, to become president of The Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank. On May 2, 2017, the board of trustees at Heritage removed DeMint as president of the organization. In June 2017, DeMint became a senior advisor to Citizens for Self-Governance, a group which is seeking to call a convention to propose amendments to the United States Constitution in order to reduce federal government spending and power.
Richard Andrew Gephardt is an American politician who served as a United States Representative from Missouri from 1977 to 2005. A member of the Democratic Party, he was House Majority Leader from 1989 to 1995 and Minority Leader from 1995 to 2003. He ran unsuccessfully for the Democratic nomination for President of the United States in 1988 and 2004. Gephardt was mentioned as a possible vice presidential nominee in 1988, 1992, 2000, 2004, and 2008.