The NCSL Blog


By Amanda Zoch

State legislators fight for issues, represent their communities and commit their time to preserve and strengthen our democracy. That’s hard work. And in these strange and tumultuous times, legislating may feel harder than ever.

Image from videoNot only is our country awash in civil unrest and political tension, but COVID-19 has also altered legislative operations. Tasks that were previously simple and routine—like walking into legislative chambers—have become logistical challenges.

Last year, NCSL created a video to welcome and thank legislators for committing themselves to public service. This work is essential to the health of our democracy. And how you approach this work, in addition to strengthening your states and communities, can strengthen the legislative institution as well.

When elected, legislators don the mantle of democracy and with it, the responsibility to leave the legislative institution better than they found it.

We encourage you to take a moment to watch the video and consider your place within the long and historic tradition of state legislatures:

So whether you’re legislating within your chamber, in a hockey arena, outside or from your couch with your kids’ voices in the background, the legislative institution endures because average Americans choose to give themselves, their time and their hard work to it.

Amanda Zoch is an NCSL policy specialist and Mellon/ACLS Public Fellow.

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About the NCSL Blog

This blog offers updates on the National Conference of State Legislatures' research and training, the latest on federalism and the state legislative institution, and posts about state legislators and legislative staff. The blog is edited by NCSL staff and written primarily by NCSL's experts on public policy and the state legislative institution.