A Day In The Life Of A Congressman Essay

Submitted By odonohue99
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Pages: 5

A day in the life of a Congressman "Although we fell short tonight, I am proud of the issues we focused on in this race, from building an economy that works for all Americans to the need to address campaign finance reform and climate change with much greater urgency, and I remain committed to fighting for those issues and working to make life better for families in our region," Jones says, and I smile as he makes eye contact. "I congratulate Congressman Wilson on his victory and wish him and his family well," Jones continues. "I hope that he and our elected officials from both sides of the House will rise above partisan gridlock and get to work on the urgent issues facing our region and our nation." I almost feel sorry for him. The feeling fades, luckily. My name is Chester Wilson, Republican representative of Nebraska in the United States House of Representatives, and I just reclaimed my seat. I’m listening to Derrick Jones’ concession speech following the election. At this point, I’m supposed to shake hands with him – and I will – but something about Jones rubbed me the wrong way. Perhaps it was his lack of emotion, or his clammy chapped hands. The race is over, however, and I won’t see him for a long time. The camera crews pester me for a while, and I give them a hint of my goals for the future and my reaction to the results before reuniting with my wife, Melinda. The rest of the night, unfortunately, is uneventful. BRRRT BRRRT BRRRT BRR—SLAM! I have to get an early start, and so here I am in my spaceman pajamas at 6:00 AM, asking myself why I do this to myself a dozen times before pouring myself a bowl of cereal and milk. My wife is huddled underneath her blankets still, and my sons won’t have to wake up for a while. Today on the agenda: meet up with some fellow Congressmen, “discuss the budget” (read: argue), sit, answer the phone, sit, sit, fight lobbyists, get a coffee, sit some more, and maybe, just maybe be able to have some family time. Staying true to my rough schedule, I head to Capitol Hill via the Metro. Over breakfast, I meet with the House Budget committee, where we discuss the many possibilities of how to use our nearly $2 trillion federal budget. It’s a quieter, more informal way to get one’s ideas on the table. We meet once a week, each time with more things to discuss. The meeting adjourns after an hour, and I’m off to my next order of business. Here I am, the House chamber for a Republican conference meeting. I have a chance to speak directly with Republican leaders, like the Speaker of the House and the House majority leader. I legitimately look forward to this special face-to-face time with House leaders. It seems to facilitate better communication among the Republican party and builds a better sense of teamwork. A few minutes before 10:00, I head to a meeting of the House Committee on Agriculture. I am a member of four House committees: Agriculture, Budget, Energy and Commerce, and Government Reform. Committees do much of the important work in Congress. Members study legislation, debate issues, hold public hearings, and amend bills. Committees take up a lot of my time. In today's meeting, we are briefed on bioterrorism, and then discuss how Congress can protect America's food supply. How do representatives get assigned to committees, you ask? Generally, you pursue committees that reflect your own background and expertise. I represent an agricultural district of Nebraska, so I wanted to be on the Agriculture Committee. But I'm also on the Energy and Commerce and Budget committees, which are my personal interests. Unexpected events often happen. A meeting with Ambassador Allen Johnson--a U.S. trade