August 06, 2009

My Congressman is Scared of His Constituents

According to TPMDC, my congressman, Brad Miller, won't be meeting with his constituents in any large-scale meetings over the August break because he has received threatening phone calls over his support for a dangerously flawed Obamacare bill. His office says that another reason he won't be having a townhall is because of the "fake grass roots" that have dominated other events around the country.

I don't get involved in protests or meetings, but I do live here, and I do keep my eyes open. There is nothing at all fake about the widespread and growing bipartisan opposition in this area to this healthcare bill, even if Miller's office and other Democrats would like pretend are the handiwork that the same Republican operatives that botched the 2008 elections so badly.

Uh, no.

Brad will presumably spend August quaking in his loafers behind locked doors, counting down the days until he can flee back to D.C., away from his angry constituents.

Posted by Confederate Yankee at August 6, 2009 12:09 AM

Is it fear, or is it contempt. Or both. I'm guessing it's about 75-25 contempt over fear; but you know him better than I, so I will defer to your assessment.

Subotai Bahadur

Posted by: Subotai Bahadur at August 6, 2009 01:42 AM

Yeah, it couldn't be death threats that's making him cancel those meetings. I mean, why should a politician take death threats seriously? It must be something other than the death threats. That doesn't even make sense. Death threats? Death threats.

Posted by: scalefree at August 6, 2009 02:44 AM

Death threats? Yeah, right. An easy fabrication.

Face your constituents. Demonstrate that you've read the applicable bill, and then stand up for it. And be prepared to respond to the obvious and overwhelming criticisms.

Posted by: BuckeyeSam at August 6, 2009 06:44 AM

I live in your district! I've been calling and calling, finally last week, I talked to his scheduling secretary. (Sharon). She claims she has been getting phone calls that say "we" want to slap him in the face. She told me she would try to fit me in with a group of 4 other people, "but he has to meet with a lot of different groups and doesn't have a lot of time.". Supposedly, he's meeting with a few conservatives on Friday afternoon, not sure if it will do much good to show up outside his office, but I'm thinking about it. Kay Hagan's office claims they're going to put her town hall schedule on her website. Not holding my breath!, Sincerely, from Wake Forest.

Posted by: ckdexterhaven at August 6, 2009 07:03 AM

Why do so many politicians act like they do not need voters. Do they know something we don't?

Posted by: Dan at August 6, 2009 07:33 AM

Alleged "Blue Dog" Mike McIntyre down here in the 7th district in SE NC has also gone into hiding.

That's OK - we'll all remember that next year.

Posted by: neomom at August 6, 2009 07:55 AM

Dear scalefree:

Death threats are taken very seriously by law enforcement, especially more than one. In this age of caller ID, cell phones, etc., proof of death threats would be very easy to provide, yet where is the proof? So, crawl back under your bridge. This congressman is just like the others - claiming fake grassroots so they don't have to face the music. Here's a novel idea - let's assume his false premise and say every single person attending a town hall was brought there by an insurance company, *but* they all live in his district. It's still a representation of constituents, right? Regardless of how or why they are there, they are represented by him and deserve an audience.

Posted by: Ted at August 6, 2009 08:04 AM

Let them continue to believe its fake. These Dems are clueless when it comes to the American people.

Posted by: Dennis D at August 6, 2009 08:34 AM

I guess people around here don't read the articles:

"The call to the D.C. office was, 'Miller could lose his life over this,'" said Canipe. "Our staffer took it so seriously, he confirmed what the guy was saying. He said, 'Sir is that a threat?' and at that time our staffer was getting the phone number off caller ID and turning it over to the Capitol Police."
Capitol Police have the number, I expect we'll hear about an arrest in due time.

Posted by: scalefree at August 6, 2009 09:05 AM

I think it's the "job threat" he's more concerned with.

And, yes, I live in his district.

Posted by: Eagle1 at August 6, 2009 09:28 AM

I don't BELIEVE him! I think this is their next line of attack to not meet with the citizenry. They are LIARS and I hope to God you send this clown home in 2010!

When they say these LIES I would also hope that the people of his district make him prove it!

Posted by: Jaded at August 6, 2009 09:38 AM

Let's get back to death threats. How would you handle a death threat? Not a death threat against your family, anybody would react badly to a death threat against their family. But just a plain old death threat against your own life. If somebody called you on the phone & said "you will die if you go into work tomorrow", would you go into work that day? What if they called in the death threat against a public townhall meeting you were sponsoring? Would you still attend the meeting, death threat & all?

Posted by: scalefree at August 6, 2009 09:59 AM

I have been calling his office for at least 4 weeks, asking when he was going to have a town hall. I think I've been calling for longer than that, b/c as soon as I became aware of Obamacare, I've wanted to get in touch with my congressman. Brad Miller's office has been saying for weeks they don't know when/if he'll have town hall meetings. I was also concerned when the stimulus package was planned, and he held no meetings for that either. If he was so anxious to hear from his constituents, why didn't he have town halls already scheduled? If they were scheduled, and IF there were death threats, then he could have cancelled them.

Posted by: ckdexterhaven at August 6, 2009 10:11 AM

I haven't heard of my Congresscritter (Etheridge) having any meetings either. There isn't anything scheduled on his website.

Posted by: Larry in Franklinton at August 6, 2009 11:20 AM

It's too bad that citizens and our representatives can't sit down together and have an open, civil dialogue with honest questions and answers, rather than meetings that devolve into shouting matches.

Democrats AND Republicans need to promote this concept, both the representatives and the citizens.

Leaders who are sponsoring health care reform need to be informed enough to answer questions thoroughly and honestly. Citizens who attend public meetings need to be educated and informed in order to ask the right questions. These meetings should not be a propaganda machine for either side of the issue.

Sadly, this isn't likely to happen. There is too much secrecy involved in the details of the reform proposals. It also doesn't help that two thirds of the population is so ignorant of our system of government that they can't name the 3 branches of the Federal Government.

Shouting doesn't mean that people are informed. It just means that they're mad. Frequently, they don't even know "what" they're mad about.

Posted by: Dude at August 6, 2009 01:12 PM

Bull! Yeah, that's classic: "The people are ignorant".

The people are informed; it's the Congressweasels who are not. And they don't care to be, ala Conyers, who believes the bills are so long and complex that days and teams of lawyers would be needed to read what they supposedly "write".

If you've watched any of the videos that have already gone viral, you'd know the people shouting down the lies and the propaganda know exactly what's going on - and they're sick of having the Looters piss on their shoes and tell 'em it's raining.

None of this is about "healthcare"; it's about a link in the chain of controlling people.

Wise up.

Posted by: Cindi at August 6, 2009 01:42 PM

I guess people around here don't read the articles:
Capitol Police have the number, I expect we'll hear about an arrest in due time.
Posted by: scalefree at August 6, 2009 09:05 AM

That's not what I would call proof, moron. How about I tell you that I received a call from Steven Spielberg asking me to be in the movie E.T. - is that enough proof for you? I guarantee you nothing comes from this supposed claim of a death threat.

Posted by: Ted at August 6, 2009 01:47 PM

Though anything is possible, I'd bet that Congressman Miller's seat in Congress is fairly secure. The results from the NC 13th Congressional District for the 2008 election:

Brad Miller (D) 214,829 66%
Vernon Robinson (R) 109,247 34%

During that election Congressman Miller raised $948,618 for his election campaign while his opponent raise a mere $40,847.

During the 2006 election Miller raised $1,771,007 and spent $1,754,817 while his opponent, Vernon Robinson, raised $2,049,621 and spent $2,207,519. Nevertheless, Congressman Miller was re-elected in 2006 by and overwhelming majority:

Miller: 98,540 63.71%

Robinson 56,120 36.29%

I doubt that Congressman Miller is "quaking in his loafers". My guess is that he's enjoying his vacation and is probably not interested in engaging in shouting matches with an angry mob of uninformed citizens who don't understand the concept of civil discourse.

But, I could be wrong.

Posted by: Dude at August 6, 2009 02:12 PM

Cindi, Had you actually read and grasped my post you would understand that I, also, advocate that our representatives be informed enough to honestly answer questions from the citizens.

The citizens have a responsibility, too. Your reply to my post is a perfect example of the ignorance on the part of citizens to which I refer.

Thank you very much, but, I'm not in the least bit interested in watching viral propaganda videos showing angry people engaging in shouting and screaming. I've seen a few, enough to know that they're disgusting.

Posted by: Dude at August 6, 2009 02:27 PM

Brad Miller probably isn't quaking in his boots, b/c this district is so gerrymandered. We, (his constituents) dont' live in San Francisco, so why do we have to live under the rule of a guy who votes the way Pelosi tells him?

On WPTF (the local Raleigh station) at the top of the hour break (2pm), his spokeswoman characterized us as "against health care reform." I'm against the socialization of my country. He's already mortgaged my children's future, he should have to look into their innocent faces.

Posted by: ckdexterhaven at August 6, 2009 02:28 PM

Caught that PTF as well, ckdexter. And the station-news is touting the alleged "death threat".


Listen, Dood; I read your post and I comprehend just fine.

The viral videos you've so fastidiously avoided, and mischaracterized as propaganda, feature citizen speakers who are in control of the facts, and themselves; it's not abuse they're shouting, it's the truth.

But keep your statist head in the sand...or wherever else you keep it.

We, The People, Are Coming.

Posted by: Cindi at August 6, 2009 03:07 PM

Just a heads up guys, I have called all 3! of Democrat Senator Kay Hagan's offices this afternoon. They will not be releasing a schedule of supposedly already scheduled meetings she has with her constituents. The flack in the Raleigh office did tell me that she will be voting for this bill. (whatever it is?) The word has been put out from the DNC "check our website".

Sorry for the multiple posts. :(

Posted by: ckdexterhaven at August 6, 2009 03:31 PM

> "Why do so many politicians act like they do not need voters. Do they know something we don't?"

Bingo. You got it. "A Republic, if you can keep it." We couldn't.

Oh, 233 years is a pretty good run.

But now it's time for Hope.

And Change.

I don't know who the "rightful owners" of this once-great Nation are -- but they sure as hell aren't the voters.

Posted by: Jim at August 6, 2009 04:38 PM

Guess what, Cindi? We, The People, are ALL of us. We, The People, are not just the citizens who feel as you do. We, The People, Are Here, Already.

Truth? In the viral videos? Perhaps a grain of truth can be gleaned, here and there, from a few of them. Here's your ticket on the clue bus, lady; shouting a thing doesn't make it TRUTH.

I have no doubt that many of the "citizen speakers" of which you speak are in control of the facts. And, like many politicians and paid pundits, they will often manipulate the facts to suit their agenda.

Truth? You don't want to know the Truth.

Jim, What makes you think that the Republic is finished? Of course, it's changing. It's been changing since day one. Change is the one constant that you can be sure will always be with us, or any other culture for that matter.

This once Great Nation is still a Great Nation. The voters spoke in 2008. They will speak again in 2010 and in 2012. It'll be interesting to see how they speak.

Posted by: Dude at August 6, 2009 06:26 PM

Dood, eight years of continual demonization of the right, in any way that it could be done, lies told and mischaracterizations made, outshouting and prevention of any speaker you cared to label with the racist/homophobe/whatever labels, and now you want civilized discourse. Whatsamatter, Dood; dissent no longer patriotic.

You're getting a taste of your own medicine, liberally dosed with a real-time understanding of the POS bill takeover of medicine in this country and suddenly shouting is what gets your shorts in a wad?

You are not The People; you're the Looters.

Dood, you and yours? You're done.

And now, I'm done with you and your whining.

Posted by: Cindi at August 6, 2009 06:39 PM

Cindi, Wrong again, madame. We're not done. We've only just begun.

I've never expected civilized political discourse from the fringes of the far right or the far left.

No lies or mischaracterizations are necessary to demonize the far right. That's self evident.

What you refer to as whining is in fact observation.

I shall miss you terribly.

Posted by: Dude at August 6, 2009 07:37 PM

For 8 years you thought you were America. Turns out America is larger than that, & you can't handle that fact. Grow up.

Posted by: scalefree at August 6, 2009 07:56 PM

Pride commeth before a fall. So does liberal.

Posted by: Marc at August 6, 2009 09:09 PM

Violence at Tampa health care forum

As the building filled to capacity, angry protesters stuck outside began to scream, yell, and chant. At one point, those trying to get inside began banging on windows as Tampa Police officers quickly spread out guarding all entrances.

Posted by: scalefree at August 6, 2009 09:12 PM

Regretfully, I admit that I voted for this butthead, thinking he would do the best job "for the people". Since he seems not to care about his voters wants and needs, he must be planning an early retirement. I'm sure Obama will give him a nice bonus for helping him socialize our once great nation.
O.B.A.M.A.= One Bad Ass Mistake America !

Posted by: unclefuzzy at August 6, 2009 09:12 PM

Uncle Fuzzy: Our great nation has had many socialist policies for the past several generations. Don't worry, we'll continue to be a Democratic Republic and a capitalist society. We'll also see a few more aspects of socialism introduced into our society, as we have seen in most other industrialized First World nations.

Posted by: Dude at August 7, 2009 12:39 AM

Scale Free, the violence could easily have been perpetrated by liberal followers of Obama. Their leader, Obama, put the word out yesterday to "hit back twice as hard."

Who's to say the violent protesters weren't liberal plants either?

In 2002, I went to a speech George Bush had for a local congressman running for re-election. I brought my then 8 y/o son. The liberal "anti war crowd- not peaceniks", were so violent it was frightening.

Posted by: ckdexterhaven at August 7, 2009 06:06 AM
Who's to say the violent protesters weren't liberal plants either?

It's always Liberal Plants that are responsible for everything that goes wrong in your world, isn't it? Hundreds of Liberal Plants were shipped in to bang on the doors & windows, chant & scream nonsense & make the poor, honest, polite Conservative citizens look bad.

Posted by: scalefree at August 7, 2009 12:45 PM
Who's to say the violent protesters weren't liberal plants either?

It's always Liberal Plants that are responsible for everything that goes wrong in your world, isn't it? Hundreds of Liberal Plants were shipped in to bang on the doors & windows, chant & scream nonsense & make the poor, honest, polite Conservative citizens look bad.

Barack Obama is your President. Grow up & accept it.

Posted by: scalefree at August 7, 2009 12:46 PM

Liberal plant! Liberal plant!

Posted by: scalefree at August 7, 2009 02:26 PM

A Roomful of Plants

Posted by: scalefree at August 7, 2009 02:57 PM

This is how liberals do astro-turfing. Right down to having people who can't read the signs they are holding, mime troops, megaphones, and attacking other protesters.

At the Brad Miller protest, the pro-Healthcare crowd could only get 10 people to show up. 10 vs 685.

Posted by: Logan at August 8, 2009 10:57 AM