How to meet your congressman

There are actually businesses in D.C. with one primary mission – to get you in the door of a lawmaker’s office. is one of them. It isn’t a lobbying firm. It doesn’t argue issues for its clients. It doesn’t flash money around. What it does is get you face time by hitting the phones hard.

Kevin Schultze, who oversees scheduling at Soapbox, says it can take weeks, going back and forth at least six times to get on the calendar with a congressional office. And you have to fight to get heard through the din.

“There are so many requests on the desks of these schedulers, they tell us, that anything we can do to slow that down or to perk up their ears, we will use it,” Schultze says. “The first thing we always lead with is the address, to show that that person is a constituent. But we have used information like, ‘This person is a cousin of the congressman’s,’ ‘This person went to high school with the congressman,’ ‘This person lived in the same dorm as the congressman.'”