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13 February 2012

By Pat Waller, 2012 Winter Intern, Montana Office

Any day spent manning the Voter's Research Hotline (1-888-VOTESMART) is guaranteed to be an interesting one for the staff and interns who answer the calls. Back in the 1990s, the Hotline was set-up as the original pathway of communication for the general public to access the wealth of information Vote Smart collects and maintains, now all available at Although the volume of calls has declined dramatically over the years because of increased use our website, you can trust that during business hours there is always someone on Hotline duty poised to answer any questions you may have.

Pay attention to the word ANY. Interns receive all sorts of inquiries including just about every politically-based research question that one could think of (and a few that aren't). These questions range from the basic, “Who is my congressman?” or “How do I get in contact with my Senator?” There are also the more obscure including, “What is Mitt Romney's favorite food?” In case you were wondering, it's meatloaf.

These examples are really what is so great about the Research Hotline. It is set-up to field calls from any member of the general public, no matter your political experience level and of course no matter your political preference. Anyone willing to pick of the phone and call us toll-free has the opportunity to have personal researchers such as myself, help them navigate our database. Yes, all the information you could ever need is right at your fingertips at, but just in case, we're also personally here to lend a hand if and when you need it.

Project Vote Smart has been made possible by over 100,000 liberal and conservative fellow citizens. No funds are accepted from lobbyists, corporations, unions or others that support or oppose candidates. As a volunteer-based organization, Vote Smart will survive on individual small contributions or not at all. For more information on how you can become a member, please visit us here.

Related tags: blog, interns, research-hotline

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