I am holding a town hall meeting tonight in Chemung County.
6:00 – 7:00 PM, Southport Town Hall, 1139 Pennsylvania Ave, Elmira
I hope you will be able to join me to discuss our efforts to protect Social Security.
Rep. Tom Reed’s Town Hall Meetings have changed. Since his re-election to Congress last November many of these events have been themed. It started with his February 19 meeting in Owego—it was billed as a meeting to discuss his Defense of Property Rights Act.
The next day’s he spent an 75 of his 90 minute Penn Yan meeting discussing Foreign Policy, especially Syria and ISIS. There was no mention of his Property Rights proposal.
The next “themed” Town Hall Meeting was the one announced above in Southport (Elmira) with “Social Security” being the topic of the day. The announcement was placed on his Facebook page less than 7 hours before the event! Even the Elmira Star Gazette gave its readers a less than one day notice of this meeting:
I have been told that Rep. Reed’s staff sends post cards out to those who live near the location of the meeting will be held. I don’t know who receives the post cards– I hope everyone in the Town is informed about the meeting and is invited to attend–not just registered voters or worse, only those who voted in 2014.
In previous years Rep. Reed had Press Releases to inform the Press and constituents a few days in advance of the meeting. (They were usually sent out on the Tuesday before his Saturday meetings.) According to Rep. Reed’s website the last Press Release to announce a Town Hall Meeting was January 30 when he announced :
Notice he gave one day’s notice for these events, too.
His website has be revamped and the Town Hall Announcements have their own sub-menu spot. You go to his site. You then find “How Can I Help” on the vertical menu banner, and “Town Hall Events” appears on the drop-down menu. If there are any scheduled meetings, they would be listed there. Clicking on Events Archive takes you to the list of previous meetings. The Southport event isn’t listed.
What our congressman says at these meetings is news. It gives his constituents information about what is happening in Washington, and our representative’s opinion on those events. Why would a politician wants to limit who attends these meetings?
Seldom are journalists present to report on what the audience asks and how our Representative responded. The exceptions seem to be that city newspapers, especially Olean, Elmira, and Ithaca, are able to cover the meetings. Other Town Hall Meeting are occasionally covered by smaller papers.
Sometimes NewNY23rd readers attend Town Hall Meetings and report their findings either with full articles or they offer us their notes from the meetings. Some comment to Facebook or Blog articles if its particular topic was discussed at the meeting. Two recent comments, one to a blog article, and one to a Facebook posting tells of Rep. Reed’s response to questions concerning the minimum wage problem:
Thank you for shedding light on this slick, clever politician. I recently attended one of his town halls and went away almost delirious with frustration. The room was a cheering section for Reed as he spewed misinformation and dog-whistled loathing for the disadvantaged. Get this: according to our congressman, a person on public assistance makes $43,000 a year (if s/he takes advantage of everything available). As for the minimum wage keeping people in our region in poverty, not a problem. We have too many jobs, and people just won’t take them. According to Reed (and his bobble-headed local posse) welders make $60,000/yr, but nobody wants to be a welder, and too many of our children are going to college. All that was in answer to the minimum wage question. There is no minimum wage problem. Just a lot of lazy, over-educated riffraff.
In town hall meeting in Allegany Mr Reed stated that he would vote for the TPP stating that NAFTA has brought up wages in Mexico, when I asked about good old American wages and the min wage he said that he’s aganist rasing the min wage Made sense to me NOT ???
Calling constituents lazy, over-educated riffraff and praising increasing Mexican wages but not United States’ might not go over well if they were reported in every newspaper in the district.
Consider attending his meetings. Contact us, we are always interested in what goes on there.