Texas House of Representatives, Rep. Eddie Lucio III
Spring 2013 Site Review
Position: Legislative Intern
Student: History Senior
A typical day as a legislative intern for Texas State Representative Eddie Lucio III involves a wide range of tasks. Because the committees Representative Lucio serves on convene at around 8 am, I usually have to arrive at the office at around 7:30 am in order to attend our daily staff meetings where all the staffers in the office huddle around the conference table in Representative Lucio’s office to go over the day’s agenda. If I needed the Representative to sign a “Joint Author” form, or “Co-Author” form, or if I needed to update the Representative on an assignment he needed me to look in to, I would do it at this time.
After our daily staff meeting I immediately begin working on the “bill books” for the bills that are scheduled to be heard in the upcoming week. A “bill book” is a compilation of assorted documents that help the Representative present a bill of his before committee. It usually consists of: A “legislative background” which explains whether similar bills had been passed in other state legislatures, a “Frequently Asked Questions” section, a “Bill Analysis” which explains the implications and details of a bill, and “Talking Points” for the Representative as he lays out the bill.
As I attempt to complete my bill books, which is your main responsibility as a Legislative Intern, I inevitably end up doing various administrative tasks like: ordering lunch for the office, preparing documents to be filled with various house committees, answering the phone, and responding to constituent issues.
Because Representative Lucio filed a little over 70 bills this legislative session, my internship has pretty consistently followed this pattern of attempting to complete assorted bill books while juggling additional administrative tasks. Although the workday technically ends at 5:30 pm, I am usually in the office till around 7:30 pm or 8:00 pm. Many times this is because committee hearings take much longer than anticipated, or because the Representative gives a surprise assignment to me.
Summer 2010 Site ReviewPosition: Legislative Intern
Student: Sociology Senior
This past summer, I interned in State Representative Eddie Lucio’s III office as a Legislative Intern. Before I provide a description of what I did as intern this summer, I want to begin by saying that interning for a State Representative can vary substantially from office to office, especially during the legislative session. During the legislative session, I have been told that the experience of being an intern greatly changes and is a lot more demanding—since there is so much going on, interns are expected and will have a lot going on as well. However, we were not in session this summer, my experience was a much more casual and slow paced one.
The “day in the life” of a Legislative Interns involves a lot of very basic, and sometimes seemingly boring and simple tasks. However, if you get involved with it, you will learn a lot and make your experience that much more beneficial. For example, every morning the interns were expected to go to the mailroom, collect the mail, stamp and then sort it. I personally always found this pretty exciting because the office gets a lot of mail, especially newsletters and magazines across a wide variety of industries, so there is always a lot of good reading material to catch up on! A lot of this I found very enlightening, since I had very minimal previous knowledge of all of the various state agencies and all the work they do. Throughout the day, we served as receptionists, answering the phone and greeting all visitors that walked in the office. Again, may seem boring, but it was pretty interesting sometimes! The major part of our day was normally consumed by doing research for various research topics that were given to us. We did this via the internet and research databases. Some days, we were expected to attend agency briefings or hearings, where we were expected to take notes which we would type and turn – but over the course over the summer, this only happened a handful of times.