Congressional Republicans AWOL From August Town Hall Meetings


No wonder the public’s disgust with Congress surpasses even the disdain they hold for President Barack Obama.

As Congress takes off the month of August, back-home constituents expected an opportunity to debrief their Senators and Representatives following a dismal, gridlocked, ineffectual Summer term.

But many Congressional Republicans would rather hunker down in private over the five-week August recess than face constituents on both sides of the political spectrum angry over the Legislative branch’s milquetoast indecision on immigration; the Federal budget and the national debt ceiling; Obamacare, agriculture subsidies; transparency and civil liberties; and — well, just about everything else.

Take the case of Dallas-area Representative Pete Sessions (R-Texas), who has yet to reconnoiter with the same Tea Party base that helped him win his seat in the first place. “He can just give us a date,” Katrina Pierson, one of Sessions’ conservative constituents, told The New York Times. “We’ll set it up.”

So far, so silent. Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) is playing golf with Donald Trump. So-called conservatives like Texas’ Sessions and Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) are simply missing in (in)action.

Here’s Breitbart’s rundown of some more GOP legislators known to not be participating in the dirty work of facing their constituents — that is to say, their bosses — so that they can go back to Washington, D.C., and do the job they were hired to do:

Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL); Rep. Tim Griffin (R-AK); Rep. John Kline (R-MN); Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX); Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX), the chair of the House Rules Committee; Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC); and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), who has “not announced any town halls but did participate in them in 2009.”

As The Times’ piece points out, the GOP’s shunning of town hall feedback is strategic. People like Graham know they’re in trouble with conservatives, and they simply would rather let them eat cake. “Congressional offices have gotten increasingly clever about keeping their schedules under wraps,” waiting until the last minute to announce any public feedback meetings, holding meetings in tiny venues and even front-loading the crowd with ardent supporters, who are asked to show up earlier than the announced start time in order to file in first.

Matt Kibbe, President of conservative activist group FreedomWorks, said in May that Graham in particular exemplifies GOP hypocrisy at its worst. “Lindsey Graham could be replaced with someone worthy of that seat,” he said. “The way he lashed out at Rand Paul [for filibustering on drones], he’s begging for a primary.”

But Kibbe saved an even more apt barb for his comment to The Times this week. Wondering aloud why Graham and other GOP do-nothings won’t come out of their shells for frank town hall meetings during their 35-day vacay, he observed:

“To quote Lindsey Graham, if you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to be afraid of.”

Follow who’s holding town hall meetings and who’s not this month over at the FreedomWorks “demand a town hall” Web page.

Personal Liberty

Ben Bullard

Reconciling the concept of individual sovereignty with conscientious participation in the modern American political process is a continuing preoccupation for staff writer Ben Bullard. A former community newspaper writer, Bullard has closely observed the manner in which well-meaning small-town politicians and policy makers often accept, unthinkingly, their increasingly marginal role in shaping the quality of their own lives, as well as those of the people whom they serve. He argues that American public policy is plagued by inscrutable and corrupt motives on a national scale, a fundamental problem which individuals, families and communities must strive to solve. This, he argues, can be achieved only as Americans rediscover the principal role each citizen plays in enriching the welfare of our Republic.

Join the Discussion

Comment Policy: We encourage an open discussion with a wide range of viewpoints, even extreme ones, but we will not tolerate racism, profanity or slanderous comments toward the author(s) or comment participants. Make your case passionately, but civilly. Please don't stoop to name calling. We use filters for spam protection. If your comment does not appear, it is likely because it violates the above policy or contains links or language typical of spam. We reserve the right to remove comments at our discretion.

  • villager

    Feeling too comfortable to be disturbed by matters of real importance, or maybe they just have nothing to say anymore?

  • Frank Zappa

    Going to the Proctologist rates higher than the scale of approval by our “Congress” What a F’N JOKE. It is too bad that we don’t have a “Parliamentary” form of Gooberment so we could have a vote of “No Confidence” in these so call “Law Makers” and FIRE THE LOT OF THEM. Get ride of all the Scum Sucking Cockroaches that are career politicians once and for all.

    • billybob

      You can still recall them any time you can get enough people. They did it here in California and got Arnold.

      • ‘Barbara Messmer

        Not every state allows recall.

  • Quester55

    Don’t you just love this Current Bit of Obamacrat Propaganda, first Those LEFT-WING S.O.B.’s SAY SHUT YOUR MOUTHS, & When The Republicans COPY those habits of the DEMOCRATS, They Get the Crappy end of the stick again!
    It’s a strange thing to see the DEMOCRATS, Becoming Just another, ” CLONE “,

    of their MASTER, “OBAMA”!

    As for the reception waiting For Obama’s Clones when they try to FORCE payments from All Users & non-users alike, Those F.E.M.A. Death Camps will become so over Crowded That Obama will have an EMPTY COUNTRY to RULE!

  • To Tell The Truth

    The difference between the 2 parties is like the difference in rank among lieutenants and virtue among prostitutes…there is none. Every part of a cesspool smells equally foul.

  • FreedomFighter

    “Congressional Republicans AWOL From August Town Hall Meetings”

    WE THE RULING CLASS WILL DECIDE WHATS BEST(for us)–Constituents input not needed

  • pt

    They aren’t going to do anything, so why should they waste their valuable time listening to you.

  • Motov

    Has anyone noticed a change in their logo? The stars on the elephant now appear upside down, I think It seems rather SATANIC.