Personal Contributions

Although I am employed by the official DC office, I have been going into the campaign office 3-4 afternoons a week to help organize the interns. Usually, when the campaign director is gone I am in charge of keeping the interns on task and helping them determine who should be doing what (sign delivery, cold calls, etc.). This opportunity has allowed me to contribute to the campaign team from a semi-leadership position which is much different than the role I play in the DC office.

As you can imagine, campaigns this election cycle are functioning much differently than usual. Instead of being dependent on volunteers and door knocking, the emphasis has really shifted to phone calls, mail, and TV/ tech. advertisements. One of the ways in which I have contributed to the campaign team’s virtual, grassroots work was by creating a PDF for all of the volunteers to reference when starting off their calls [Phone_Banking_Direction_DRAFT]. I was able to see how this document aided in volunteer learning when we had a socially distanced phone-banking event on Tuesday.

Another job that I have, for the DC office, is responding to constituent emails in letter form. Some batches of emails have dozens, even hundreds, of letters within them but other issue areas have only 1 or 2 letters in their batch. In order to save time, I recommended that we call the individuals writing in about the specific issue areas where there are only one or two people inquiring about the topic. My boss liked this idea because giving them a call would take much less time than drafting a letter to them (which requires research and a tedious approval process). This has made it so that we can focus on the more pressing issues that constituents are contacting the Congresswoman’s office about.

Lastly, on behalf of the Congresswoman, I am responsible for answering all constituent phone calls made to the D.C. office. While I had this same opportunity last summer, this summer has been much different because of the lack of supervision and the fact that I do not have the other staffers around me monitoring my calls. This responsibility has been tough, with everything going on in the U.S./ the world at large right now. I recommended to my supervisor that the other intern and I generate a tally system for the calls we continue to get script-like messages for so that it makes it easier for us to relay constituent input. This has made the phone-answering process a lot easier than entering each individual message regarding, say the recent ICE rule regarding international students.