Despite the too-easy jokes about politicians, our elected representatives hold their jobs for one reason: to serve the people. These men and women cannot know how best to represent their constituents, however, if communication between the two parties is non-existent. Especially with moral issues like abortion, assisted suicide and stem cell research, our legislators need to hear how we feel and how we think they should vote!
Ever wonder how to get ahold of your state or federal representatives to let them know your opinions? Read on!
First, you need to know which district you live in to contact your state or federal representative. Your address determines this; it’s not something you pick.
• Enter your address at oregonlegislature.gov/
• Do the same at house.gov/representatives/
• See who represents you in Congress at congress.gov/members/find-
Each listing typically includes information like how long the legislator has served, their political party, what district they represent and contact information. That last part is the most valuable to constituents!
When you call an office, a staff worker will answer. State your name and hometown, then briefly express your opinion and how the legislator can assist you (often voting a certain way). The staff will record your thoughts and may ask you for more or clarifying information. They usually will not debate, as their job is simply to pass on information to their boss. The entire process often takes less than five minutes.
An email is similar: state how you are connected to the lawmaker, then explain why you are writing. Many politicians have websites where you can directly contact them, as well.