Presentation on theme: "C ONGRESS 10/28-29/08. H OW THEY REPRESENT Members of Congress Individual Constituents Organized Interests District as a Whole Solve problems with agencies."— Presentation transcript:
H OW THEY REPRESENT Members of Congress Individual Constituents Organized Interests District as a Whole Solve problems with agencies Provide Jobs Sponsor Private Bills Sponsor appointments to service academies Answer Complaints Provide Info Introduce Leg. Intervene w/ regulatory agencies Obtain fed grants and contracts Help with importing and exporting Help in securing favorable Be figure head Obtain federal Projects Obtain grants and contracts that promote employment Support policies that enhance economic prosperity, safety, cultural resources, and so on. Participate in state and regional caucuses
R EPRESENTATION How should they represent their constituency? Constituency -the district making up the area from which an official is elected Delegates, trustees, politico, conscience Delegate - a representative who votes according to the preferences of his or her constituency Trustee - a representative who votes based on what he or she thinks is best for his or her constituency Politico - a rep. should follow their own judgment until the public becomes vocal about a particular matter Conscience - a rep. should follow the will of the people unless they believe it is in the best interest of the nation to act differently. (pillow test)
T HE H OUSE AND S ENATE Bicameral legislature- a legislative assembly composed of two chambers or houses. House representation is proportional to population- i.e. about the same number of people are represented by one representative Senate representation is distributed equally to each state- i.e. each state has 2 senators
R EQUIREMENT D IFFERENCES House Age 25 7 years citizenship 2 year term length Number per state 1 per 630,000 today Constituency, tends to be local Senate Age 30 9 years citizenship 6 year term length 2 per state Constituency, is both local and national
T HE E LECTORAL S YSTEM - J OURNAL W RITING Who decides to run? Personal decision Will they be able to raise money? Will they be able to win Would you run for public office? Why? Why not?
I NCUMBENCY Incumbency -holding a political office for which one is running Huge advantage- Why? Money raising Face time- constituents see your face more franking privilege- legislators can write their constituents without paying postage casework - working for their constituents, patronage/ pork-barrel legislation- bringing back money and services to your district Professional legislature- a legislature whose members serve full-time for multiple terms
D ISTRICTS Gerrymandering- the apportionment of voters in districts in such a way as to give unfair advantage to one political party Urban or rural? Normally republican or democratic leaning