Last fall, during her campaign challenging Representative Glenn Thompson for our 5th Congressional District seat, Kerith Strano Taylor made a promise: If elected she promised to hold two open town hall meetings, with unscreened questions, in State College each year.
I was reminded of Taylor’s promise when a friend from another state told me he recently heard his congressman speak at a town hall meeting. He said his representative was very impressive, answering all questions directly and with specifics.
No matter what your politics are, most would agree that all U.S. representatives should hold open town hall meetings.
Glenn Thompson asks for our votes; the least he could do is publicly take questions and explain his positions here in the largest city in his district. It is simply not the same to take questions via website or phone call-in show, without follow-up and without the public or the press present. To claim so is disingenuous and shows disrespect for the people he is elected to represent.
Climate change, education funding, health care, campaign financing, food and water security, terrorism, clean energy, poverty, science denial, immigration, ongoing wars, transportation infrastructure, the federal budget ... the list of serious issues we face today is nearly endless.
The voters, and the Centre Daily Times, should demand that Glenn Thompson publicly explain his positions via open town hall meetings. That’s what a real representative would do.
It’s difficult to think of a single legitimate reason why Thompson doesn’t stand up and do this.