A lot has been happening the last few months, and if you care about certain issues, you may be trying to figure out how to get more politically involved.
One thing that you probably keep hearing is that you should call your elected officials. And we understand that might seem a little bit scary. But it's much easier than you think. Calling is the most powerful way to put pressure on your Congress, even more than social media, email, or snail mail.
Why? Because It shows commitment to a cause. And representatives know that if they don't hear the concerns of their constituents, it could impact their ability to get reelected.
So, if you want to pick up the phone, here's a step-by-step instructions for calling your representative(s):
I don't know who my representative is.
Believe us, you're not alone. Many people don't know who their senators and representatives are. And that's okay! Just click input your zip code or state; it will tell you who your elected officials and their provide contact information.
Great! Now, how do I contact them?
You can call their offices directly.
But if for some reason you can't do that, you can dial (202) 224-3121 and you will be directed to the Capitol switchboard, ask to be connected to your senator or representative and the operator will direct your call to their office.
Tools like MakeMeCall.org could help you out If you're shy (or just hate calling people) . You just have to sign up and enter your zip code. Then, every day you'll get a call which connects you with one of your congress-people at random. That way you have no excuse for avoiding calling your representatives.
Terrific!, But what happens when I call?
Here's an example of what you could say, modeled after a post by Facebook user Mark Jahnke, who used to do this job at Capitol Hill.
"Hello, my name is Jane Smith. I'm a constituent from New York, zip code 10001. I don't need a response. I am opposed to the repeal of the Affordable Care Act and I strongly encourage the Senator to please oppose any type of repeal. Thank you for your hard work!"
Not Hard At All, right?
Super! Is there anything else I should know?
Yes. Call only your representatives! Maybe you really, really want to yell at House Speaker Paul Ryan, but please don't call the anyone who does not represent you. Unless you can provide a zip code that proves you're a constituent, your call will be pretty much ignored and not tallied down. This will also help create a backlog of calls coming from constituents from that district, and we want to make sure their concerns are heard.
Stick to calling only your representatives, and keep it short and direct, it's better for everyone. That way the office will answer more calls, which translates into more people being heard. In the end, the bigger the total number of callers, the more your representatives need to pay attention.
Good Luck !