Interning in the Kentucky State Legislator’s Office

Tomorrow marks my two weeks of interning for a representative in the great state of Kentucky, where I have called home since kindergarten. As I stated in my about me, I am a student at the University of Louisville where I am majoring in Political Science. As I am almost complete with my degree, I needed one more Political Science class, I decided last Fall(2015), that a professor had persuade me to apply for this internship. I decided why not to try, I have nothing to lose, as I have finished one internship already. So I applied, got an interview, went to orientation and on January 7, 2016 I set off for another internship to tackle.

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The e-mail I received when I got my internship!

On my first day, I sat through another orientation about who people were in the Legislative Research Committee (LRC), and what confidentiality was and how we cannot speak on the matters of what bills are being passed and what not. It was a refresher for what Professor Gainous and Director of Special Projects in Admin Support Services Julie Kroger prepared us for. After that we were to get our id’s made, go see our representative and also get lunch. The line was so long that, I went to get lunch with some other interns and then met my representative. After I met my representative, he took me and introduced me to so many officials and staff, I barely remember their names. I got to sit on the floor when they all convene at 2 for General Assembly (GA) in the house.

After the first day I settled in to where I drafted letters, replied to invites on whether or not if my representative will be attending, and also reading about a lot of bills that my representative sponsors or co-sponsors and attending GA, which I usually sit in the Gallery. So far it has been interesting and slow. I always go to general assembly and I have sat in on many meetings with my representative. On the first day, he told me how he votes, which struck me because he asks himself:

  • Is it constitutional?
  • Will my constituents agree?
  • How does it affect me?
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My Badge for the Annex and Capitol.

 

My representative also told me to ask questions if I had any when we meet people about their views on bills. This was tested last Thursday when two groups of people came. After the meetings on our way to lunch, my representative told me that my questions were very unique and outside of the box with the angle I approached, I was proud.

As for this week, it has been interesting because Martin Luther King Day, then on Tuesday, They were on Monday schedule meaning the general assembly did not meet till 4pm, which meant that I did not have come in but I was not aware of it because I was driving there and did not check my phone for an e-mail. So I went in and pretty much, did homework and read about the bills and where they are, meaning what committee they are in or if they died…When I went to the GA at 4pm, I got to see one bill have a discussion, amended and voted on. It was interesting to see that process happen quickly and what concerns representatives such as monetary funds in the budgets.

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To conclude, Today I received a phone call from my representative who told me to not come in tomorrow due to the drive from Louisville to Frankfort and that the GA plans on holding off because the Western part of the state will be covered in whatever our state gets. As for me, I have noticed my increase to use my free time to check out KET and C-span more often as well as the LRC website. If you have time or concern about something, check it out.
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