Role of a Legislator

As the example given in class, if the people say that they are 97 percent opposed to flag burning than the delegate legislator will also be opposed to flag burning. According to Magstadt, legislators who are expected to act on the basis of constituents’ opinions are under a constraint that makes illicit deals unlikely. As a trustee you would always go with what you thought was right, regardless of what the voters or your constituents wanted. Edward Burke was the first critic of the delegate theory; he said that people should be leaders not followers.

He believed the legislators should act according to their understanding of the public good and not merely as a mouthpiece or puppet of the voters. If the public elected the legislators to represent them in congress than they know that he or she will do their best to support their views but also add their own when they feel is necessary. The third and final representation in congress is a politico who acts as a delegate and a trustee, they go with what they feel are in the public goods interest and also the beliefs of constitutes.

An example of this type of legislator would be William Fullbright who demonstrated that even though he represented a very conservative state of Arkansas, he still had a liberal view on certain topics. He often voted against legislation, especially on civil rights measures, that he personally favored. He did realized though that since his constitutes racial views were strongly opposed to his own, and if he wanted to stay in office he would have to somewhat agree with the deep-rooted prejudice of the majority.

In conclusion, a politico’s arguments are the most persuasive because they show the best of both worlds. They agree with what their fellow constitutes, the public and they also go with what they feel is good for society. This idea would be the best for our government because they won’t seem as a puppet controlled by voters and they also won’t be all about what they think is right for the state. So, a politico would be the best way to go.