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Legislator  What They Do

Just the Facts

Legislators Career Video

Develops, introduces or enacts laws and statutes at the local, tribal, State, or Federal level.

This career is part of the Government and Public Administration cluster Governance pathway.

A person in this career:

  • Analyzes and understands the local and national implications of proposed legislation.
  • Appoints nominees to leadership posts, or approves such appointments.
  • Confers with colleagues to formulate positions and strategies pertaining to pending issues.
  • Debates the merits of proposals and bill amendments during floor sessions, following the appropriate rules of procedure.
  • Develops expertise in subject matters related to committee assignments.
  • Hears testimony from constituents, representatives of interest groups, board and commission members, and others with an interest in bills or issues under consideration.
  • Keeps abreast of the issues affecting constituents by making personal visits and phone calls, reading local newspapers, and viewing or listening to local broadcasts.
  • Maintains knowledge of relevant national and international current events.
  • Makes decisions that balance the perspectives of private citizens, public officials, and party leaders.
  • Negotiates with colleagues or members of other political parties in order to reconcile differing interests, and to create policies and agreements.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would sit most of the time. There's some walking and standing. You may have to lift and carry things like books, papers or tools weighing 10 lbs. or less.

Work Hours and Travel

  • Irregular hours
  • Overnight travel
  • Overtime work
  • Weekend work