Commentary by Ron Miller
Our esteemed Congressman and House Majority Leader, Steny Hoyer, has decided to host a town hall meeting on Tuesday, September 1, 7:00-8:30 pm at North Point High School at 2500 David Road in Waldorf. The doors open at 6 pm and parking is available in the high school lot after 5 pm. The auditorium capacity is 1,000 people. That's the public service announcement. Now here's the opinion piece; it might be a trap.
Let me explain my trepidation about this particular town hall meeting. Hoyer isn't an idiot; not only has he witnessed what his Maryland colleague, Senator Ben Cardin, and others in the House and Senate have experienced during similar town hall meetings, he's been on the receiving end of the citizens' ire at a meeting once already. At a press conference with Rep. Michael Arcuri in Utica, NY, Hoyer got an earful from Don Jeror, a 52-year old man who was there to speak to his representative and ask him when he was going to hold a town hall on health care reform, and who didn't even realize Hoyer was going to be there. When Hoyer got up and made what Mr. Jeror considered false statements about the health care reform proposals on Capitol Hill, he called him out on it, describing it as what he does when he yells at his TV over politicians from both sides of the aisle.
There are few things Hoyer likes less than having an angry registered Democrat captured on video calling him a liar and having that video viewed nationwide - thousands of times on YouTube as of this writing.
He didn't acquit himself well, either, coming across as arrogant and dismissive of Mr. Jeror's concerns. Hoyer is incapable of handling criticism; he comes across as peevish and condescending, and his subsequent statements calling Mr. Jeror "a rabid animal" and all opponents of the Democrats' health care reform proposal "un-American" do nothing to dispel that impression of him. So why would he risk facing the public again and possibly being confronted by an angry citizen or two - or hundreds?
My opinion? He wouldn't. That's why I'm suspicious about this town hall meeting. It wouldn't surprise me if people or their questions are screened beforehand. Holding it in Waldorf is somewhat safer than other possible venues since Charles County has become increasingly favorable to Democrats over the past few years. It wouldn't shock me in the least to learn after the fact that he gave friendly audience members a different set of instructions so they could occupy the 1,000-seat auditorium before anyone else could show up, relegating opponents to expressing their frustration outside and making them appear to be the "angry mob" that's become a staple of the liberal message machine these days.
Of course, none of these "angry mobs" have attacked police, damaged property, disrupted Congressional hearings or gridlocked cities for days on end like those "peaceful" crowds demonstrating against "Bush's War" or the International Monetary Fund/World Bank meetings - but I digress.
Hoyer's already in the tank on health care reform, and he's going for the full monty - the public "option." We can question him until we're blue in the face and he'll refuse to answer you, look down his imperial nose at you, and talk over and past you. That's a guarantee. He's already made up his mind and the "un-American" constituents who elected him to Congress 15 times since 1981 can pound sand.
So if you're planning to attend, don't expect a warm welcome or easy access. As for me, I'll be working into the evening that day - unlike the takers on Capitol Hill and in Annapolis, people like you and me have to put in long hours to create the wealth they want to spread around.
Ron Miller, of Huntingtown, is a conservative blogger and activist, former and future candidate for the Maryland Senate, and communications director for the Calvert County Republican Party. Ron is a regular contributor to
ProLifeUnity.com. You can also follow Ron
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