Sen. Durbin: Amount of time Senate spends fundraising would shock Americans

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Durbin, as a member of the Democratic leadership, typically raises funds for and donates money to other candidates as well. He has spoken out against the burden of fundraising many times in the past, and sought to address it with the Fair Elections Now Act.

The bill would create an opt-in public financing pool for qualifying political candidates who cap certain types of donations.

Members of Congress cannot campaign using government resources, so NPR also asked lawmakers what kind of non-governmental digs they use to make calls. According to Rep. Peter Defazio (D-Ore.), fundraising isn’t necessarily done in style.

"If you walked in there, you would say, 'Boy, this is the about the worst looking, most abusive looking call center situation I've seen in my life,' " he said. "These people don't have any workspace, the other person is virtually touching them."