COLUMN: Citizens respectful at Tenney campaign’s “town hall”

Submitted by Indivisible Mohawk Valley

U.S. Representative Claudia Tenney held a ‘Town Hall’ for the express goal of meeting with her constituents in the 22nd District. In an interview with Utica Observer Dispatch in April she stated, “We’re looking forward to engaging [via a town hall]. I can’t wait to do one.”

However, this ‘Town Hall’ was paid for from her re-election funds and had more of an atmosphere of a campaign event.

Nevertheless, more than 140 citizens showed up from NY 22 Indivisible grassroots groups to ask questions and to voice their concerns about Tenney’s record of voting on the side of big business and her commitment to the untenable agenda of President Trump.

Attendee Sarah Reeske stated: “Tenney’s vote against the Affordable Care Act represents a betrayal of all of those who need affordable health care. Tonight she defended that position and it is her constituents who will ultimately be the losers.”

Tenney has consistently claimed that those who have opposed her positions were paid protestors and that she has never previously had a town hall due to death threats. The attendees tonight put that concern to rest once and for all. Everyone attended with respect and submitted appropriate questions on cards before the event.

Unfortunately, Tenney remarked sarcastically on some of the questions and derided members of the media, as well as many of her constituents for their heartfelt convictions.

It is generally accepted belief that Tenney scheduled her ‘Town Hall’ in Camden instead of a more central location in order to discourage attendance; however, attendees drove hours to attend, including Tenney’s constituents from Binghamton, Cortland and many small towns in Madison County.

“I was disappointed that she said things that were lies but we had no chance to follow up and correct her,” said Matt Wahila, who drove 2 1/2 hours from Endwell.

Many members of Indivisible Mohawk Valley who attended expressed interest in seeing Rep. Tenney hold a true town hall where there could be a dialogue with her constituents rather than a monologue.


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