“It’s challenging, it’s engaging, it’s wonderful, and it’s difficult,” said United States Senator Chris Coons. I recently spoke with Coons, a Democrat, via video. Since 2010, he has represented my home state of Delaware in the Senate.
Coons began his political career at the local level. He served as president of the New Castle County Council before being elected county executive. He has been interested in politics since childhood, he said. His second-grade teacher even nicknamed him “Senator.”
Coons described his three key functions as a Senator. “My most important job is representing Delawareans and going to bat for them,” he said. He listens to his constituents' concerns and challenges, and even if they just want to express their opinions.
Coons also works with fellow Senators. “I try to engage thoroughly and respectfully with them, but also fight for Delaware,” he told me. Finally, he has a global role on behalf of his state and the Senate. He recently spoke with British and French Ambassadors, for example, to discuss business interests in the state and the relationship between those countries and the U.S.