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Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 5, May 1956
File 012
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Facts Forum. Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 5, May 1956 - File 012. 1956-05. University of Houston Libraries. University of Houston Digital Library. Web. November 14, 2019. https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/1352973/item/1329/show/1271.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Facts Forum. (1956-05). Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 5, May 1956 - File 012. Facts Forum News, 1955-1956. University of Houston Libraries. Retrieved from https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/1352973/item/1329/show/1271

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

Facts Forum, Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 5, May 1956 - File 012, 1956-05, Facts Forum News, 1955-1956, University of Houston Libraries, accessed November 14, 2019, https://digital.lib.uh.edu/collection/1352973/item/1329/show/1271.

Disclaimer: This is a general citation for reference purposes. Please consult the most recent edition of your style manual for the proper formatting of the type of source you are citing. If the date given in the citation does not match the date on the digital item, use the more accurate date below the digital item.

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Title Facts Forum News, Vol. 5, No. 5, May 1956
Series Title Facts Forum News
Creator
  • Facts Forum
Publisher Facts Forum
Date May 1956
Language eng
Subject
  • Anti-communist movements
  • Conservatism
  • Politics and government
  • Hunt, H. L.
Place
  • Dallas, Texas
Genre
  • journals (periodicals)
Type
  • Text
Identifier AP2.F146 v. 5 1956; OCLC: 1352973
Collection
  • University of Houston Libraries
  • Facts Forum News
Rights No Copyright - United States: This item is in the public domain in the United States and may be used freely in the United States. The item may not be in the public domain under the copyright laws of other countries.
Item Description
Title File 012
Transcript ■"■ -™1-""™ ■HM Typical of the reaction to gress is this flood of mail stacked on tables and overflowing to the floor of the Senate post office. An overage day, however, brings about 100 letters to each congressman. These letters influence their votes and help to "keep them on their toes." to your two senators. The advantages in doing so are that they have a personal interest in your vote and will probably refer your letter to the congressional committee concerned. They can give it added weight if, instead of sending it with a forma] note, thev write the committee. "We think this suggestion merits your attention." It's an extra asset if your senator or representative is on the committee concerned. He may himself introduce your idea into the legislation. "Write each person a separate letter," one congressman warned. "It's onlv human, when a letter is marked 'copy.' " he said, "for each party to discount its importance, assuming the other recipient has given it full attention." It's particularly effective to present your ideas for legislation directly to a chairman of a committee. That way thev will certainly go to the committee Staff, which culls the ideas from all letters, puts like ideas together, and works some into actual wording of legislation. It makes no difference to most committee staffs whether the writers are people of prominence or ordinary folk. The well-thought-out letter is judged on its merit. As one committee staff member told me, "Little people can have big ideas." Any library or government office has the blue- bound Congressional Directory, with the names of committee chairmen and all members of House and Senate. There's a separate listing of committee assignments of all members of Congress. Sometimes it's a puzzler to find which committee has a bill. If you don't know, you can write first to find out, or write to the most probable committee, trusting that your letter will be forwarded, if necessary. You can assume in writing that the Congress member or committee chairman is friendly. The crank letter or the vituperative letter may be answered formally but is unlikely to influence legislation. Also, the perennial letter writer may lose his effectiveness over the years unless he takes care that each letter presents a sound "what" and "why." Citizens propose new laws on a wide variety of topics. Some have such merit that a congressman goes into action on it at once. A constituent of Senator Karl E. Mundt, Republican of South Dakota, wrote to recommend that pensions betaken away from government workers found guilty of subversion. "1 introduced such a bill," Senator Mundt relates, "and it became a law in 1954." Representative Wright Patman, Democrat of Texas, recalls that one of his constituents, while John Dillinger was causing gangster tenor through tbe Midwest, wrote: "Why don't you offer a bill by which the Attorney General could offer a reward for capture or information leading to capture of such criminals?" Mr. Patman introduced such a bill, which became law on June 6, 1934. "The law," he says, "aided directly in stopping the criminal careers of Dillinger and others like him." Representative Russell V. Mack, Republican of Washington, cites a couple of cases from the numerous ones where he found letters from home helpful. "A lot of writers," he says, "protested to me about the junk mail crowding their mailboxes. As a result of com bined efforts, junk mail is apparent junked." Congressman Mack also tells ol v<- erans who wrote him about the inj"' tice of not getting Social Securi' credit while in service. This cow mean loss of a pension for lack enough quarters of coverage. The W was changed to allow those w''» served between September, 1940, aj June, 1953, to get Social Security cred if they were not getting other retit( ment credit during that period. WORDS INTO PRINT As a citizen you even have " power to be a legislative witness without ever going to Washingto' D. C. You can write a committee A ing that vour statement be publish] in the collected hearings on a partj'J lar bill. These publications are wic'' and carefully studied. Probably 1<* effective a method is to ask your <*J YOl < SE gressman to incorporate your stal HO ment for or against legislation in appendix of the daily CongressiW Record. J You can also try to influence leglS tion through the executive branch the government — such as the ', Office or Treasury Departments or ^ Veterans' Administration. But )', may be spreading your effort a ». thin by doing so. It's true that s^ legislation originates with a drat', the executive agencies, but your <n gressmen are elected to make J laws. You can also take official stand* pending laws through various OtU /ations with which you're allied. ?lj views may be communicated °^\ at committee meetings. This holds | for state, county, and local law —ell as national ones. You need" V'1 bv uneasy about breaking a law uy \j ing your congressman. I nailed • fear with the official statement: L living laws apply only to those . are paid for attempting to infll,e^ legislation." As a private citizens are unrestricted in decent expffl of your opinion. In fact, if you write a let^S Congress, you're exercising thci1.,!! constitutional privilege in the •'' 1 Rights — guaranteeing vour rig'1] petition the government for a ' Page 10 W \.i iiiiiv in iv^a *- of grievances." ,>■ Even the simplest letter e\l",'~. a view on legislation is a petitl% may have only one signature, N' 1 petition it commands respect if' 1 tains sound and clearly eXP\J ideas. Just be sure to take this C»J-1 advice of Representative Clair & ,. Democrat of California: "I>n il. generalities. Say, 'I'm »° against) this for these reasons'',.. 3, 4.'" Such a letter helps ma* sj mocracy work. j! 1'vi is Fori m News, Mw Al*BAM, Se*ato« Lister John | "'"REStr Prank Georg, ^eorg, Kennel Albert Arrnist Carl E Roberl George ^Ona Barry \ Car] ii, ^SIN John J. Stewart Kto„, ■ W. i- J«lii, l. E. W J C G, Hour "lies V H SK, onus
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