This report was contributed by Steve Beikirch who attended the meeting. Steve is a lifelong Democrat who has voted in every election since Jimmy Carter ran for President in 1976. He will listen to views on other political ideologies, but rejects Libertarianism and ideologies that inject religion into politics. “I learned from my mom to be proud of being a “bleeding-heart” liberal.” Steve writes:
There was a very good turnout. If you’ve been to the Heights Theater then you have an idea of it’s capacity. I would estimate that it was about two-thirds filled. Before the panelists spoke Dr. Coleman invited the audience to come up to the mike and speak. Many did. Most were critical of Reeds performance. Dr. Coleman introduced several local Chemung County office holders that were in the audience. The only one that I knew was Mike Lausell who is running for State Senate in the 58th district. One audience member who came up to the mike was Chris Callas. Chris is running for Chemung County Legislature eighth district. He seems like a passionate and down to earth guy.
I admit that I am prejudiced, but I feel that Dora was the only one who spoke about anything of substance on Reed’s record.
Dr. Twombly gave a convoluted analysis of why people support a candidate and how they decide to vote the way they do. This may work for a class lecture but provided nothing to the discussion.
Joe Sempolinski talked about how accessible Tom Reed is, how Reed has had 250 town halls and his membership in the problem solvers caucus.
Mike Morrongiello spent his time at the mike presenting a Reed campaign commercial about how great Reed is and how evil progressives are.
Gary Perry talked about the “non-partisan” organization he belongs to called “Reclaim New York”. He worked his way to saying how Social Security is a Ponzi Scheme and should be privatized. This produced jeers and laughter from the audience.
Last but not least, Dr. Matt Seybold, Assistant Professor of American Literature and Mark Twain Studies, offered almost as little relevant information on Reed’s performance as Morrongiello. However, Seybold was interesting to listen to.
After the panelists were finished a woman walked up to the audience mike and dropped a bombshell about Perry. She brought up the fact that “Reclaim New York” is funded by Robert Mercer and his daughter. The only thing that Perry could get out of his mouth was “We get funding from Rebekah Mercer but not Soros.”