American Government leader

?PURPOSEThis week you will write a letter to your US Senator. This homework is designed to show you just how easy it is to participate in civic engagement.KNOWLEDGEYou will practice the following skills which are essential to your development as a political science student, including:? Locating information on a political/policy topic by utilizing academically and politically sound sources? Locating contact information for an American Government leader? Identifying a policy or political issue of interest and summarizing its purpose? Evaluating views on issue of public concern by examining the potential impact of the issuTASKSWrite letter to you Senator, and mail it.1. Determine your U.S. Senators and choose who to write.Visit ? to an external site.)Links to an external site.if you are unsure of who your Senator is.2. Choose one political or policy issue about which you feel strongly.Pick something that is on the national level that is of concern to you (for example: environment, national security, immigration). To get ideas, look at newspapers, magazines or online news sites from the pasts two weeks, scan the websites of the Senator, or watch the national news on TV. Prior to writing your letter, brainstorm ideas about your issue by answering the questions below.? What is your issue and what is causing the problem?? Why is your issue an important one for you as a citizen of Washington state and a constituent of this Senator? How is it affecting you personally?? What can this Senator do to fix the problem?3. Review the letter writing format: opening paragraph, body, and conclusion.? ?See tutorial on how to write formal letters at (Links to an external site.) ? Links to an external site. ? ? See tutorial on how to write letters to member of Congress at? (Links to an external site.) ? Links to an external site. ?4. Begin your letterState your purpose. Be specific and succinct. Focus on just your one chosen policy or political issue. ?Example?: My name is Jane Smith. I live in Seattle, WA, and I am a constituent. I am writing this letter to ask that you vote for S353, legislation that would cap the out-of-pocket costs of necessary healthcare services.5.Write body of letterPersonalize your letter. Form letters or postcards are just not as effective. Both Senator Murray’s and Senator Cantwell’s staffs have indicated that they look for personal stories. ?Example?: My cousin, Joe Smith, has Type I diabetes and relies on certain medical devices and medications to stay healthy and alive. I know the great costs he must pay and that his healthcare coverage does not cover some necessary healthcare needs. The resulting costs have bankrupted my cousin, putting him at risk of losing his home. Passage of S353 would allow my cousin to cover his required healthcare needs while also maintaining a decent standard of living. It would allow him to pay his other bills too.Be informed when you write your letter, and as you write, be honest and accurate in the information you present. Legislative leaders and staff rely on information from constituents so accurate information is vial. Use specific statistics, numbers, or examples. Saying generally that you don’t like a certain law or regulation is not nearly as impactful. ?Example?: My cousin is not the only voter in your district struggling with healthcare costs. S. healthcare costs in 2016 were 16.9% GDP according to the OECD, over 5% GDP higher than the next most expensive OECD country. With U.S. GDP of $19 trillion, healthcare costs were about $3.2 trillion, or about $10,000 per person in a country of 320 million people.6. Write ConclusionIndicate the specific action that you would like the Senator to take and by when. If you would like a reply, you may request that as well. ?Example?: Again, I urge you to vote for S353 to protect ALL your constituents. I would like to receive a reply to this letter. Thank you for your careful consideration.7. Copy the letter and submit a copy in the class Canvas courseroom here. The dropbox can be found by clicking on “Assignments”. It is marked “CivicEngagementAssign.”8. Email or Mail the letter.9. If/When you get a response, please share in class.

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