Politics are quite simple.
Ridicule the (current) opponent, praise the (current) ally. (Or create a new opponent/ally) (It can be taxes, welfare or bureaucrats..doesn't have to be people...just needs to be 'not us', or 'against our interest')
It's a dirty business. Morals are not needed, just understanding the fears/needs/desires (etc) of the majority.
If you don't 'sell out' a part of yourself in politics you have a mountain to climb. (It is called communication)
Ma-ai, in its purist form (aikidowise in my opinion) changes to irimi. (Because imo, irimi is ma-ai)
If you are perfectly willing, when someone is running up to hit you upside the head....to create the impression of 'dum-de-dum-I-am-not-even-aware-I-am-gonna-be-hit-on-the-head'...(WOW! IRIMI)...that is a form of politics (playing to the minds of others but not for your own ends, instead to a higher ideal that you don't presume to understand).
Is it fair to teach the value of changing an attack (kaeshi-waza) into an opportunity? Is not this only (the martial art of destruction)politics, but Macchiavelian (sp). Mind control?...No, your attacker attacks, the path to his victory is seen (his goal)..and so on, I won't post answers in an aikido forum as if people do not know these concepts.
However if your Irimi has egoistic/judgemental intent....you are just a reflection of your attacker and it doesn't actually matter what happens...not to my interpritation of the unverse anyway.
But enough about me..by politics do you mean attack, ma-ai or irimi?