What Does a Congressman Do? (Insert Joke Here)

What does a congressman do coverWhat Does a Congressman Do?

Submitter: What Does A Congressman Do? An intriguing question! If you’re an inquisitive child, and you found this book in the juvenile section of my locally library, you are in luck! You and two of your friends can check this book out because they have 3 copies. It looks like, at least in the photos, if you were a congressman in 1965 you would have been an old white man. Interestingly, both then congressmen Henry B. Gonzalez and John Lindsay died one month apart in 2000.

Holly: Here’s a definite weeding contender! Sure, congressmen (and women) still do some of the activities described in this book, but it is not a complete picture of their job in 2015. Here is an example of a book where, even if all of the text in it was still accurate, public libraries should still update. The photos are just too dated.


What does a congressman do introduction

congressmen create bills


  1. Was there a whole series of “What does a […] do?” that this is a part of? Maybe time to weed more than just this book.

  2. Not to mention, the title was even outdated for 1965. It should have been: What Does a Member of Congress Do? (Or Congressperson.) There were at least 2 women. And there’s still a lot of old white men now, but it’s not quite as homogenous as it was when this book was published. Definitely time for a new book!

  3. What does a Congressman do? Whatever the people who bought and paid for him want. Sad to say, I guess I would extend that to Congresswomen, too.

  4. I like the introductions by the two politicians. Gonzalez’ in particular is quite charming, with it’s self-deprecating jokes about a book “even a Congressman can understand”. I’m impressed he realised girls would be reading the book, but it’s a shame he thought government was “made of men”, rather than people. Note Lindsay’s mentions “try[ing] to send Americans to the Moon”, as this was four years before Apollo 11.

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