Who are these "voters" you speak of?
Vox is featuring a very interesting piece today by an anonymous member of congress who lays out 9 misconceptions about congress. It all quite interesting, especially the part about congress actually being quite in touch with their districts, although I have to wonder whether they spend much time there with anyone but the rich people who fund them. Anyway, it's well worth reading although it's ironic that he or she writes a very cynical take on politics and then says we shouldn't be cynical.
However, I did want to address tone little thing. After going on about how politicians spend almost all their time hobnobbing with the rich in order to get enough money to run for office there's this:
Almost everyone in Congress loves gerrymandering.
Without crooked districts, most members of Congress probably would not have been elected. According to the Cook Political Report, only about 90 of the 435 seats in Congress are "swing" seats that can be won by either political party. In other words, 345 seats are safe Republican or Democratic seats. Both parties like it that way. So that's what elections are like today: rather than the voters choosing us, we choose the voters. The only threat a lot of us incumbents face is in the primaries, where someone even more extreme than we are can turn out the vote among an even smaller, more self-selected group of partisans.
Yes, that's true. But that self-selected group of partisans also have another name. They're called "voters". They aren't financing the campaign so they can get a tax break. They are "voting" in "elections" for people who represent their values. The incumbent can do this too. She can also turn out "voters" in a primary. In fact, they almost always win, simply by virtue of name recognition and incumbency.
I know it's unpleasant to have to deal with active voters who care. They tend to have ideas about politics and want their representatives to ...well, represent them. They are less likely to vote for you simply because you look good on TV. But it's an unfortunate part of life which, if you devoted even the tiniest bit of the time you spend dialing for dollars, listening to their concerns, you might find they could be among your most helpful grassroots supporters.
I wrote about the propensity of Democrats to treat their idealists and activists like shit today in Salon. I don't know if this MOC is a Democrat or republican. But I do know that a Republican is far less likely to be rude to their own voters than are Democrats.