By Walter Heinz, Monica Tomlinson, and Brenda McCullough (Contact)
To be delivered to: Rep. Mike Fitzpatrick (PA-8)
"What I think a town hall meeting is, is when you put out the word to a community a week ahead of time, you secure a location and you tell people it's either a general town hall meeting on any issue or a specific town hall meeting on an issue like health care, and you let everybody speak."
Ironically, those were the words of our Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick back in 2010 when he was calling on his opponent to hold town hall meetings.
But 2010 seems like the distant past. Avoiding town halls like the plague is the new strategy many members of Congress are using to steer clear of backlash over controversial votes on the Ryan Budget, the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy and earmarks for their wealthy donors.
Unfortunately, Congressman Fitzpatrick is no different. Over the last eight months, Congressman Fitzpatrick has held no public town halls.
That’s right, ZERO.
That’s why we are calling on our Congressman Mike Fitzpatrick to hold a large public (publicized in advance) town hall in the coming weeks before the election.
Congressman Fitzpatrick’s absence is not going unnoticed. Last week, the Bucks County Courier Times ran a front-page article on the fact that Congressman Fitzpatrick no longer holds public town halls. In the article, Rep. Fitzpatrick’s chief of staff claims that groups like PA Working Families are scaring him away from having town hall meetings.
As a member of Congress, Mike Fitzpatrick controls military funding, foreign policy and the budget of the wealthiest nation in the world. He should not be running scared from us. We are Medicare recipients afraid of losing our benefits. We are retirees counting on Social Security to be there when we need it. And we are cancer survivors whose lives depend on health care reform.
We want Congressman Fitzpatrick to know that we are his constituents and we won’t bite. We just want him to answer some questions on his votes on Medicare and other issues that affect our lives. We want real communication from him, not more campaign ads paid for by corporate donors and lobbyists.
Please join us in calling on Rep. Fitzpatrick to live up to his duties as a public servant and meet with all of his constituents, not just the ones who agree with him.
As long as Congressman Fitzpatrick collects a $174,000 salary provided by our tax dollars, he should be willing to meet with us.
Thanks for helping us hold our elected officials accountable.
Walter, Monica and Brenda
Walter “Budd” Heinz, Levittown resident, cancer survivor
Monica Tomlinson, Bristol resident, Medicare recipient
Brenda McCullough, Newtown resident, future Medicare recipient
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