Our congresspersons on the state and/or national level are our representatives in the making of laws in our country. They are supposed to speak for us when it comes to making laws and they make many decisions that legally impact our lives. Our representatives have four different roles that they can play while they are representing us the delegate, the trustee, the politico, and the partisan.
The Delegate: In the role of the Delegate the representatives see themselves as agents/representatives of those who elected them, the people--us. The delegate will vote based on how they think the people in their home state or district would want them to vote. In this role, he/she is truly representing the people. This is my favored role because the representative is truly giving a voice to the people of his state/district. This is what I think our forefathers had in mind when they created our government.
The Trustee: In the role of the Trustee, the representative believes that each question they face must be decided on its own merits. Independent judgment is their guide and in this role they vote based on their own judgment and ideology. In this role the representative is only partially representing the people or his/her constituents. This would be my second choice for the roles of the representative because he/she is still thinking of the legislation and in part of where he/she comes from. People in different parts of the country have differing (ideologies) opinions and typically your thoughts/opinions are similar to those you live or were raised around.
The Politico: In the role of the Politico, the representative is a combination of the delegate, partisan, and trustee. A politico tries to keep everyone happy and thus is a true politician. The politico representative will weigh the issue itself, the feelings of his/her constituents, along with their own feelings to make a decision. I am not too partial to this one, but it is better than my last choice, the Partisan. At least in this role, the representative is still weighing what the people want.
The Partisan: In the role of the Partisan, the representative feels they must always vote along party lines, only supporting their political party. However the party chooses or plans to vote, the Partisan will follow. This representative does not weigh his own feelings or the feelings of the people, only the political party they belong to. I do not agree with this role at all. I think that politicians, for the most part, play this role too well. In many cases, I don’t think they pay attention to bills that are up for legislation, and will play the role of the Partisan so they are “safe” from their peers and don’t think of the big picture or how it will affect their constituents.