Letters to Elected Representatives-an Informal Poll

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Letters to Elected Representatives-an Informal Poll

Postby de officiis » Wed Dec 21, 2011 8:44 pm

I am curious to know how many of you have ever written a letter to your Congressman/woman for any reason, and whether you thought that doing so was worthwhile. I see many posts in this forum that are highly critical of what is happening right now in Congress, and it leads me to wonder whether anyone who is unhappy with the way things are going in our government have taken the step of writing to his or her representative in an effort to have their voice heard. I have never really done this. I think this is because the cynical part of me feels that it won't do any good; that they wouldn't listen to me, because I'm just one person. But there is also a little voice in my head that questions whether that is the attitude I should have, and whether, if I never wrote to protest or express my views on a particular matter, I have only myself to blame.

I would add that if any of you feel that I am hopelessly naive, it is okay to say so. I recognize that this is probably true.
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Re: Letters to Elected Representatives-an Informal Poll

Postby datchiso » Thu Dec 22, 2011 7:09 am

de officiis wrote:I am curious to know how many of you have ever written a letter to your Congressman/woman for any reason, and whether you thought that doing so was worthwhile.


I have sent a few over the years, usually to complain, but I've also tried to give the occasional pat on the back.

After the NDAA bill was voted on I wrote both Senators from my state. One had voted for, and another against, so I sent one whinny-bitching-moaning letter, and one "good job" letter.

I didn't bother with my Rep as he is a monumental tool who would sell his own mother for medical experiments if his party leadership told him to do so, and I doubt he could actually read the U.S. Constitution. Too many big words.
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Re: Letters to Elected Representatives-an Informal Poll

Postby Kath » Thu Dec 22, 2011 7:25 am

I actively wrote letters, both the snail & e variety, for several years.

I've cut back seriously in the last year... it's like beating head against wall. At some point, self-preservation kicks in.

The responses were usually along the lines of, "Now don't you worry your pretty little head about these important issues, dear; your government knows best."
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Re: Letters to Elected Representatives-an Informal Poll

Postby raistian77 » Thu Dec 22, 2011 7:40 am

Nope

a monumental tool who would sell his own mother for medical experiments if his party leadership told him to do so, and I doubt he could actually read the U.S. Constitution. Too many big words.



Perfect description of my Rep also.

The one before was Curtis Johnson, a local man that owned a used car lot and a Macco.

It was said that he would not piss on someone if they were on fire, unless there was money in it.
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Re: Letters to Elected Representatives-an Informal Poll

Postby de officiis » Thu Dec 22, 2011 6:33 pm

Sounds like not too many people have done this, and those that have were not pleased with the results. Which is pretty much what I guessed.

Would it be possible to reform our representative form of government to allow average voters to have a more direct say in legislative initiatives? And would doing so give us a Congress that is more responsive to the needs of ordinary Americans? Not sure...
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Re: Letters to Elected Representatives-an Informal Poll

Postby Harry K » Fri Dec 23, 2011 10:59 am

Considering I have Charles Schumer (D-NY) as my senator, why should he give me the time of day when he faces zero competition?

My Rep is Paul Tonko (D-NY) a life long state politician who gets the same poll numbers as my senator. I believe he practically ran unopposed last time.

I wish NY was more of a 50-50 state, but my battle is more of the NYC vs. Upstate issues. :hmph:

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Re: Letters to Elected Representatives-an Informal Poll

Postby dnick » Tue May 08, 2012 7:36 pm

Harry K wrote:Considering I have Charles Schumer (D-NY) as my senator, why should he give me the time of day when he faces zero competition?


What if we could organize enough to bring a 'none of the above' candidate to states like that. I understand how people have trouble with the idea when it takes votes away from the 'lesser of two evils' candidate, but a single candidate election seems like the perfect place to use it to show voter dissatisfaction.

Or with a single candidate do they not even show up on the ballot? Seems like a write in candidate should still be an option. If so, that would be a good issue at the state level, demand that you at least have the option for a write-in.

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Re: Letters to Elected Representatives-an Informal Poll

Postby dnick » Tue May 08, 2012 7:42 pm

Kath wrote:I actively wrote letters, both the snail & e variety, for several years.

I've cut back seriously in the last year... it's like beating head against wall. At some point, self-preservation kicks in.

The responses were usually along the lines of, "Now don't you worry your pretty little head about these important issues, dear; your government knows best."


Might be a dumb thought, but do you happen to have any of them? From another post, I was just thinking of taking a list of issues and maintaining a database of 'official' responses from representatives concerning them...kind of like a public record of their stance on issues, and 'don't worry about it, we'll take care of it' responses are a good thing to refer back to when they fail to 'take care of it'.

Something along the lines of 'back in May of 2007 you said 'it was at the top of your priority list' but in 2009 and 2010 you voted against two separate proposals...what have you done about proposing legislation that would resolve the issue?'

If we could keep a centralized list of responses, I'm sure we could come up with patterns to call them on or praise them for.

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