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Markkula Center for Applied Ethics
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Voting for Ethics

A How-to Guide for Voters

“Voting for Ethics” is a non-partisan, how-to guide for U.S. voters. It will help you identify the hallmarks of an ethical candidate and make a more informed decision -- whether for your local school board or a national election.

Sadly, Hana Callaghan, author of “Voting for Ethics,” passed away in January 2020 just after completing the manuscript for the book, one of her greatest passions. In an effort to make the resource available to the voting public as early as possible ahead of the 2020 presidential election process, the Ethics Center made the finalized manuscript available here for free, and continues to provide this valuable resource today. Download your own copy and cast an informed and ethical vote in all elections to come.

Download "Voting for Ethics"

Voting for Ethics - The Video

About the Video

"Voting for Ethics" is a short video made possible by a grant from a generous donor who shares our vision to educate the public about ethics in the voting process and how to evaluate candidates to make more informed decisions.

Watch the Voting for Ethics Video

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The Ethics of Voting: John Pelissero on Voting Rights and Voter Suppression

Are laws always ethical? How have voting rights recently been restricted within the United States? Are state officials abusing their power in unethical ways to change voting regulations?

John Pelissero, director of government ethics at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics discusses voting rights, disinformation, discrimination, and voter suppression.

Listen to Wild Beasts

About the Author

Hana Callaghan

Prior to her passing, Hana Callaghan was the director of the Government Ethics Program at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics at Santa Clara University. Hana had a distinguished career in law and public service, government, and politics, and had recently authored Campaign Ethics: A Field Guide about engaging in and organizing ethical political campaigns.

Hana served eloquently as the voice of the Ethics Center in all aspects of government ethics, and her astute analysis of politics and issues garnered her numerous media interviews with a variety of local and national media outlets. Her contributions to Santa Clara University and to the Ethics Center through teaching, public speaking, and dynamic videos that included interviews, as well as online learning, helped advance the community’s awareness of ethics in the political sphere.

For More Information

The Markkula Center for Applied Ethics staff and affiliated scholars can provide commentary and background information for media on a variety of government and ethics related topics including voting, elections, and campaigning.

John P. Pelissero, Ph.D.Pelissero is a senior scholar at the Ethics Center and Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Loyola University Chicago, where he served on the faculty for 35 years until 2020. An accomplished researcher and teacher in various areas of American politics, he is a specialist in urban politics and public administration. He has published dozens of articles in political science journals and has published two books. He was chairperson of the Department of Political Science, served seven years as provost and chief academic officer, and led Loyola University Chicago as interim president for one year. Pelissero promotes the values of ethical awareness and social justice in education and community action.  E-mail:


For additional details, please see the Press Release for "Voting for Ethics," or contact Joel Dibble, Senior Director, News and Public Relations at