How to Call Your Members of Congress
- Members of Congress want to hear from their constituents and won't pay much attention to someone else's voters.
- Calling district offices is just as good as telephoning D.C.
- Gather your thoughts and jot down some notes before the call.
- If there is a certain piece of legislation you would like the member of Congress to vote on, know what the specific number is (e.g., H.R. 2).
- Remember: you'll be talking to a staff member, not directly to your Representative or Senator.
During the Call
- Identify yourself as one of the lawmaker's constituents.
- Ask for the legislative staff member who works on your issue.
- Explain why you're calling and what action you would like the member of Congress to take (e.g. voting Yes on a piece of legislation).
- Describe the importance of the issue to you, your institution, community or state.
- Be concise. Legislative staff are extremely busy!
- Be polite and don't "talk down" to staff members.
- Always thank the staff member for taking the time to talk with you.
- Follow up with a thank you note to your legislator and the staff person who spoke with you. This is especially important if your goal is to establish a relationship.
Use the script example to develop your talking points
Sample Call Script
Hello my name is Jane Doe from Anytown, USA and I am a constituent of Senator/Representative ____________.
Could I speak with the legislative staff member who works on energy issues?
Hello I am calling today to urge Senator/Representative ____________ to support S.2012, the bipartisan Energy Policy Modernization Act, sponsored by Senators Murkowski (R-AK) and Cantwell (D-WA). As a chemist, I believe we should promote sustainable energy production and use.
Energy production and use is one of the most critical and complex policy issues of our time, with significant implications for our environment, economy, and national security. It is also an issue I am dedicated to on a daily basis. This legislation represents a thoughtful and bipartisan approach to a complex issue, and I support the approach established in S.2012.
In addition, the legislation also supports improved energy efficiency standards, research into critical materials and rare earth elements, energy storage and grid modernization, and innovative approaches to addressing the intersection of food-energy-water in our economy. Each of these areas plays an increasingly large role in energy production, use, and storage in our nation and community and I urge Congress to focus on positive solutions in each arena.
I am available to answer any questions on the topic if helpful. I can be contacted at Jane.Doe@me.com or 123-456-7891. Thank you for your time and attention.