I had just started to thumb through my mail the other day when my doorbell rang. Taking the handful of mail with me I answered it, and found my State Senator standing on my doorstep.
Him: "Hi I'm Joe Blow, and I'm out canvassing for votes. (Hands me a pamphlet).
Me: "Well, this is a coincidence. I just received today a suggested voting list from the Rhode Island Rifle and Revolver Association. Lets see how they rated you..." (Finds ratings sheet, and then senator's name).
Me: "Here you are... Looks like they rated you A." (Looks Senator straight in the eye). "Well, you got my vote."
Him: (looks a little surprised) "Really? Can I see?"
Me: (hands him sheet, pointing to his name). "I was going to vote straight Republican for the sake of the Balance of Power in this State, but given your A rating, I'll make an exception in this case."
Him: "Well thanks! (hands sheet back)
Me: "You're welcome; you earned it. So long and good luck!"
I think this guy will remember this conversation for a looooong time.
The moral to this story is to make sure that your reps know when your displeased with them, and when they have pleased you and earned your vote. We need to keep them informed about both conditions, else they gat lazy.
By all means call them before they vote on legislation, and speak your mind.
But never fail to remind why you are voting for or against them in the election. That's all most of them care about, and it's your ultimate weapon over them.