Says Joyce should be more accessible
I listened to the telephone "town hall" conducted by U.S. Congressman David Joyce (R, Ohio-14) Feb. 27. The telephone call lasted only about 30 minutes. All audience questions were pre-screened, and only six were asked publicly. In his presentation, the congressman complained about incivility.
I also observed the citizen "town hall" conducted in Painesville Feb. 25. Mr. Joyce did not attend that meeting, even though it was during the congressional recess. Speaker after speaker told personal stories, many of them related to personal healthcare needs and their fears that any replacement to the Affordable Care Act would price them out of the health care they need.
Virtually all citizen speakers and others at the Painesville "town hall" were respectful and civil. Many in the crowd of more than 150 standing in the cold and snow were seniors. The speakers were from all walks of life. Veterans present were thanked for their service.
Only one person in the entire group became disrespectful, and the crowd quickly closed him down. It is too bad that Congressman Joyce was not present to listen to his constituents and to see the respect they have for democratic expression. America is supposed to be a representative democracy. Elected representatives are supposed to listen to the fears and needs of all their constituents.
The citizens of the 14th Congressional District deserve the opportunity to see their congressman in person and to ask him unscripted questions. Telephone broadcasts are no substitute for this.
The citizens of the 14th Congressional District deserve to have access to their elected congressional representative.
Richard G. Melecki, Stow