My Unique Opportunity to Discuss Inclusive Credit on Capitol Hill

I recently had the rare pleasure of meeting face-to-face with a Congressman in his office. Specifically, I met with Representative Keith Ellison to talk about the Credit Access and Inclusion Act with my team at Prosperity Now.

This isn’t the first time I’ve met with a Congressperson, but it will always stand out to me for three reasons.

First, it’s not every day that an intern gets to go on a big project with their team, and certainly not to meet with a key player getting actual legislation passed on the Hill.

Second, I was impressed by how passionate he was about the issue of credit—he sees this bill as a path into the ever-important credit system for those who are currently locked out. He recognizes the bill as an opportunity to help a lot of people, and his enthusiasm was contagious even to those of us who already galvanized behind it.

Last but not least, as someone who is just starting in the field of public policy and research, it was great to see a piece of legislation move forward based on extensive research and the benefits it can provide to hardworking low- and moderate-income families.

Rep. Keith Ellison was very welcoming. He's a busy person and he only had about 45 minutes for us, but at no point did he seem hurried. He took the time to introduce himself to each one of us and made small talk whenever we had to adjust the camera. He bonded with Jeremie, our Vice President of Policy and Research, over Minnesota and took the time to chat with me personally while we were taking pictures. He asked me about my college experience and what I was studying. I would have thought that Congress, with its seemingly constant deadlock, would take a lot of energy out of a person. But the Congressman still has such an intense sense of purpose and he truly believes that his job makes the world a better place.

I don’t know that any other internship lets you get as close to the actual work being done as mine, and I will always use this to remember that no matter what we’re hearing there is still good work to be done by good people with a purpose. I hope that my work in the future goes on to inform important legislation like this and can be led by a passionate and knowledgeable leader like Rep. Ellison.

To see our interview with Rep. Keith Ellison, watch the video below!

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