Florence Town Hall, May 28, 2017
Senator Ron Wyden holds town hall in far tiny corner of Lane County – on Sunday morning, Memorial Day weekend. An especially inconvenient time and place for constituents to attend; being on the Sabbath and in the middle of a holiday at the same time.
Attendees who wanted to speak had to “take a number” for any chance at all to ask a question, and if you didn’t have your own question to ask, the organizers were prepared and happy to provide you with their own questions to “ask.” Hmmm, isn’t that kind of stacking the deck?
State Senator Arnie Roblan did the honors of introducing Federal Senator Wyden, explaining that Senator Wyden is so dedicated to us that when he comes out to Oregon for these town halls, he doesn’t visit with his family. Apparently, Senator Roblan isn’t aware that at last reports, Senator Wyden’s family lives in New York.
Senator Wyden started off by saying something about Labor Day coming up, to all appearances, confusing that holiday with the present holiday; Memorial Day.
Senator Wyden was happy to see the room filled with people, saying Democracy is alive and well in Oregon, and that the Founding Fathers meant to have the people participate in government and through town halls, he was doing exactly that. One can’t help but wonder how the Founding Fathers would have viewed holding a lottery for the privilege to ask their representative a question. One would hardly think that planting questions in the audience would be approved by them either.
The first lottery winner wanted to know what’s happening with the Russian investigation. Senator Wyden took his time in answering this one, elaborating on this and that, ending up with the promise he won’t let this die on his watch. Coincidently, this very topic was mentioned in the email sent out to let people know of the town hall – perhaps this was one of the planted questions? Other inquisitive winners wanted to hear about the release of President Trump’s tax returns. Perhaps they think knowing about his taxes will make America safer. Senator Wyden assured them he is working to pass the “Presidential Tax Disclosure Act” which had a calming effect on the crowd.
One lively exchange occurred when the Senator vowed to support eliminating the Electoral College. Both cheers and boos were heard loudly emanating from the audience, the first sign there was actually a mixed collection of political leanings attending this town hall. The questioner (who didn’t have a lottery number, yet was actually allowed to speak) asked why the Senator would support something that goes against the Constitution – after all, he did take an oath to uphold the Constitution, not just parts of it.
Wyden explained how he used to support the Electoral College, as it was set up to protect states with small populations from being out-voted by states with large populations (which is why we still need it). How, in the days of yore, news was hard to get, but now, everyone hears the same news and it’s time to go to the Popular Vote for President. Do you see any logic in that reasoning? Perhaps the senator is not aware of alternative media.
Another lottery winner wanted to know about the Paris Climate Accord and felt President Trump needs to attend. Senator Wyden agreed and encouraged all to weigh in at the White House themselves. Please send your encouragement to President Trump to REMOVE the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement with this online form here.
After about 70 minutes of grueling Trump bashing in the most polite of ways, a real question was asked about illegal immigration and what was the senator doing about it? Senator Wyden, well-seasoned in changing gears at the drop of a hat (he’s been in office since 1980) gave some answers that sound astonishingly like the ones we hear from President Trump, yet no one shouted obscenities at him, or called him a racist bigot for the solutions he offered – see the video below for this exchange and interpretation of what he was really saying.
You should have heard the crowd when another lottery winner said that President Trump won the majority of votes in Florence’s three precincts – most of the crowd was in total denial, Boo's and No’s were heard throughout the room. Unfortunately for them, this fact can be verified at the County Clerks website under election results.
There were no questions about what Senator Wyden is doing about terrorists who are killing Americans inside our own borders. Supposedly that question didn’t have a winning number. One attendee told this reporter that before President Trump was elected, questions raised were about local problems and issues the citizens were having in Florence. Now questions are all about how to impeach President Trump, resist Trump and keep the gravy trains flowing.
It’s time more people who support our president attend the town halls in Lane County and start asking real questions, instead of letting these representatives off the hook with only their supporters attending. Sign up for our emails so you will be alerted when to go to the next town hall coming soon.