Congress in the palm of your hand

Want to be heard in Washington but not sure where to begin (aside from voting, of course)? Well, you’re in luck. There’s an app for that.

I first heard about the app “5 Calls” from Ronni Bennett on her blog “Time Goes By.” It sounded almost too easy. Fire up the app and the very first screen is a list of bills being considered in Washington. Click on a topic and up pops a description of the bill and the name and phone number of your congressman or senator, along with a brief script to use, if you need it, when your call is answered. When you’re finished, click your result at the bottom of the screen and the next person to be called appears. Or you’ll be returned to the list of issues.

I was disappointed at first because when I tried it, the name and number that came up was my Democratic senator. I wanted to call my Republican senator (we have one of each), but he wasn’t listed. (I knew there was a catch!) Eventually I figured out that all I had to do was click “Skip” at the bottom of the page and the Republican’s name and number would come up. When a bill is in the House, my congressman’s name and number appear.

Modern technology being what it is, long distance calls are now toll free (something millennials probably don’t appreciate). So there’s really no excuse not to do this. Writing letters used to be the recommended way to reach a legislator in Washington, but these days we’re told a phone call is the way to go. Since your pro or con position is the only thing that’s tallied, you might as well take the path of least resistance and call. (Of course there’s no guarantee this won’t put you on their robocall list … but you can always block the number if they call)

If you don’t think calls make a difference, just remember how fast the Republicans dropped their plans to hamstring the Office of Congressional Ethics when their phone lines were jammed with protests.

March 21: I neglected to mention that the app is free and available for both iPhone and Android. And while it leans liberal, you can skip the scripts and state your own opinion. The contact names and phone numbers are there for anyone to use.



Categories: Politics, Sci/Tech

23 replies

  1. We recently changed our cable television plan to include a phone line. Less money for cable, internet, and phone AND the long distance (including Canada and Mexico) is free. Now I have to figure out who to call.

    • Well I’m in Sydney Australia if you want to give me a buzz XD

      But I better warn you; I’m very hard of hearing and the conversation will probably go along the lines:

      Whats that you say? Speak up I can’t hear you! Hello, you there?

      You get the drift 😈

      • My best friend is actually in Australia right now (a vacation of a lifetime) and we are in contact through Facebook messanger each day. I now know you are getting ready for lunch and I will need to go to sleep. This world is wonderfully different than my chidhood, I need not shout (though I am loud) because you read at your own level.

        • You’re definitely right about the lunch, and I’m more than peckish at the moment.
          I hope your friend is not in Sydney at the moment, the weather at this time of the year is usually perfect but for the past few weeks it’s been atrocious.
          Even Perth in Western Australia, which has the perfect climate year round is not escaping from the bad weather.
          In 66 years in Australia I’ve never seen anything this bad! 😦

  2. That’s a marvellous app, I imagine our pollies will somehow manage to ban it from entering this country!

  3. Brilliant! I hope it gains some traction.

  4. Wonderful use of technology! I’ve actually heard this referenced in other blogs and articles, so it’s catching on!

  5. I got the 5 calls app. That’s pretty neat. Now, if only I had a congressman with a brain I could call. (Google Billy Long of Missouri)

"Opinion is the medium between knowledge and ignorance." ~ Plato

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: