Rep. Carolyn McCarthy
announced Wednesday that she would not see reelection.
Citing health reasons, she said she would not return to Congress for a ninth term.
During the summer of 2012, Jeremy Rosenberg, a 2010 graduate of Hewlett High School and current senior at The George Washington University, interned for McCarthy. In his time serving the congresswoman, he said he witnessed her noble public servitude, attention to her constituents, and dedication to causes she held dear in the face of fierce opposition.
Rosenberg majors in international affairs with a concentration in international politics. After college he hopes to pursue a career in government, public policy, and community organizing.
Here is what he had to say about his time as an intern for McCarthy:
- What was it like to serve for Congresswoman McCarthy?
My internship with Rep. McCarthy was particularly rewarding because I knew that everyday in the office I was helping my neighbors. Whether it was legislative correspondence on a certain issue or giving tours to residents of the Fourth District, I was excited to play a role in serving Rep. McCarthy's constituents. I was familiar with the issues that mattered to the constituents and it helped enrich my experience in her D.C. office.
- What is the biggest lesson you took away from working with Congresswoman McCarthy?
The most valuable lesson I learned while working for Rep. McCarthy is that taking a stand on a hot-button issue is a gutsy move. Rep. McCarthy made her stance clear on issues such as gun control and automatic weapons bans. On many cases, the NRA, gun rights groups (including many outside of the district), send mass mailings or made mass phone calls to Rep. McCarthy's office. Despite the fact that not everyone agrees with her stance, she stood (and still stands) firm in her belief. I realize now that a true public servant "puts skin in the game" and fights for what he/she believes is best for the constituents and the country as a whole.
- What was the most memorable moment from your time as an intern?
One of the many tasks of congressional interns is to read e-mail sent from constituents to the Congress member. I remember one e-mail in particular. It was from the aunt of a good friend of mine, whose grandson is a patient of Fragile X Syndrome. Rep. McCarthy signed onto a resolution calling for more funding and research on Fragile X, as she has always been a fighter for families, especially those with special needs. It was extremely gratifying to tell this family that Rep. McCarthy was aware of their request and that she was dedicated to funding such crucial endeavors. Additionally, knowing that I directly helped a constituent address a pressing need was very fulfilling.
Perhaps my second most memorable moment was when a constituent from Cedarhurst called into the office. His son was moving to Washington, D.C. and he desperately wanted information of parts of the city where his son may have wanted to live. As a GW student, I was able to offer personal advice on the different neighborhoods of D.C. The constituent was extremely grateful that Rep. McCarthy's office was amiable and willing to help constituents, no matter how unusual the request may have been.
- How did she influence your career and future goals?
I have always wanted to enter public service. Working in Rep. McCarthy's D.C. office gave me useful insight into the inner-workings of Congress and the many "moving parts" of a Congressional office. Though sometimes the days were hectic (especially during a controversial vote or breaking news issue), this internship reaffirmed my long held belief that public service is noble. Rep. McCarthy is a noble public servant. Last spring I organized a community meeting to help disseminate important information, hotlines, and advice to residents of the Five Towns after Superstorm Sandy struck. Many of the skills I learned in Rep. McCarthy's office I found useful for organizing such a successful meeting.
- Final thoughts on Rep. McCarthy's retirement
While I am saddened by Rep. McCarthy's departure, I hope that the 4th District becomes invigorated by the idea of an open congressional seat. I remain very active in the area politically and civically, and I often get a sense of complacency when it comes to participating in such an important process.