Dear Class of 2012,
Congratulations on your election to Congress, freshman class of 2012! Now it's time to get to work. Policy meetings? Haha, no. Constituent outreach? Not so fast. Find your way around the Capitol grounds? Don't be silly, there's only one place you need to know how to get to: your fundraising call center.
As reported by the Huffington Post reports today, new members of Congress who are otherwise excited to get down to doing the people's business have another thing coming. Your top priority? Hit the phones and fundraising circuit to raise reelection money...and lots of it.
From the Huff Po story:
"A PowerPoint presentation to incoming freshmen by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, obtained by The Huffington Post, lays out the dreary existence awaiting these new back-benchers. The daily schedule prescribed by the Democratic leadership contemplates a nine or 10-hour day while in Washington. Of that, four hours is to be spent in 'call time' and another hour is blocked off for "strategic outreach," which includes fundraisers and press work. An hour is walled off to 'recharge,' and three to four hours are designated for the actual work of being a member of Congress -- hearings, votes, and meetings with constituents. If the constituents are donors, all the better. The presentation assured members that their fundraising would be closely monitored; the Federal Elections Commission requires members to file quarterly reports."
So, there you have it, freshman. This is your life now. Most of your new colleagues are veterans of this "fundraise now, fundraise later, and when you're done, fundraise again after that" game, so if you have any questions about how to raise the most money, they'd be the best people to ask. You should start with leadership. How do you think they got into those positions? If you have questions about advancing legislation or working hard for your constiuents, please...oh, who are we kidding, that Washington, D.C. no longer exists.
Congress Welcome Committee