Give Your Representative Your 2 Cents for $15
Posted on Aug 17, 2011
At least four Republican members of Congress have scheduled only paid-entry meetings with constituents rather than free, town-hall gatherings over the summer break, a move that is not unconstitutional but one that some people consider to be “skirting an ethical line.”
An Obama administration official told Politico that these “pay-per-view” meetings, which cost constituents $10 to $30 a head, are evidence that House Republicans are purposefully out of touch with a public that is eager to tell them just how fed up they are with the job Congress has been doing lately. —BF
Neither Reps. Lou Barletta (R-Penn.) nor Renee Ellmers (R-N.C.) held or have scheduled town halls, but Barletta appeared last week at a $30-per-plate “CEO to CEO” forum and Ellmers is scheduled to speak at a federal employees’ forum that is charging a $13 admission fee.
Barletta and Ellmers join Reps. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Ben Quayle (R-Ariz.), who POLITICO reported Tuesday are all appearing at pay-per-view functions while eschewing town hall meetings open to all.
Another tactic for avoiding crowds of angry voters is being employed by members like Rep. Chip Cravaack (R-Minn.), who held two town hall events — but in far-flung, relatively unpopulated parts of his northeastern Minnesota district, while doing only paid events in Duluth, the district’s population and media hub.
AP / Jeffrey Phelps
Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin speaks during a listening session in April. Ryan is one of four Republican representatives who is opting to appear only at paid-entry events over the summer congressional recess.