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How Do I Become a Congresswoman?

A campaign committee of staff and volunteers if necessary for anyone running for office.
Congresswomen serve in either the U.S. House of Representatives or Senate.
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  • Written By: N. Madison
  • Edited By: Jenn Walker
  • Last Modified Date: 08 October 2014
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A congresswoman is a female legislative representative who serves in one of two chambers of the United States Congress: the Senate, which is the higher chamber, or the House of Representatives, which is the lower of the two. To become a congresswoman, you will need to develop skills desirable in a representative, such as leadership and public-speaking skills, and meet the requirements for running for Congress, which include being a United States citizen, meeting minimum age requirements, and being a resident of the state you want to represent. Then, you will have to create a campaign committee and work together to convince voters you are the right person for the post.

You will need particular skills and knowledge to become a congresswoman. For instance, before running for election, you can work in jobs, participate in activities, and take classes that help you learn about issues affecting United States citizens and residents of your state. You may also do well to work on building good interpersonal skills and becoming an effective public speaker; developing leadership skills through work and volunteer positions is typically critical as well.

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Once you have developed the skills you will need to become a congresswoman, you typically have to file forms to indicate your intention of running for office, provide important information about you and your campaign, and demonstrate that you meet the requirements for election. For example, you have to be at least 25 years old to serve in the House of Representatives and at least 30 to serve in the Senate. You will also need to have United States citizenship for at least seven years prior to running for the House of Representatives or nine years before running for Senate. Additionally, you will need residency in the state you want to represent. Other requirements and special filing procedures may apply, depending on the state in which you will seek office.

A campaign committee is also necessary when you want to become a congresswoman. You will need a group of people, perhaps including friends and family members, paid staff, and volunteers, to work together toward your election goals. You will also need a bank account for holding and monitoring the campaign funds you raise and a treasurer to monitor the money and meet campaign fund reporting requirements.

Once you've gathered your campaign committee, you will need to work hard at raising money to fund your campaign needs, including creating an advertising campaign. Your campaign committee will also help you convince voters that you are the right person for this job. If you are successful, you will be elected to serve either two years in the House of Representatives or six years as a senator.

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