Wednesday, August 05, 2009

No town halls for Kaptur during recess; group asks her to be accountable

I had a very nice conversation with a staff person in Rep. Marcy Kaptur's office about her schedule during the August recess. I wanted to know if she had any forums, town halls or public meetings scheduled where she would be talking about the health care bill and other legislation.

I was very disappointed to learn that she doesn't plan on having any such meetings in Ohio District 9. While she has accepted various invitations to speak to specific groups, the policy of the office (as a result of federal security regulations) is to allow the individual groups to announce and advertise those events. Some of those speaking engagements may be open to the public, the staffer said, and she suggested several media outlets that post community events on their calendars as a way to learn about those events.

I understand the security regulations, so I don't object to the policy. But I do object to having significant issues and no opportunity to meet with my representative about them.

And I'm not the only one. Today, the Children of Liberty released the following open letter to Kaptur:

An Open Letter to
Representative Marcy Kaptur,
9th Congressional District of Ohio

Dear Ms. Kaptur,

It is with deep respect for the Constitution of the United States and the legislative branch that it establishes that we, the people of the 9th Congressional District of Ohio, submit this open letter.

In each Congressional election of the past twenty-seven years, the people of this district have entrusted you with the distinct honor of being our Representative. While many of us did not vote for you, the nature of our representative republic gives you the honor of representing all of us. We have been patient over these many years, and have exercised our right to speak by contacting your office with our thoughts and concerns, even when no reply was forthcoming. Last year, even though many of us might normally disagree with you, we encouraged and thanked you as you stood steadfastly against President Bush’s bank bailouts. Your speeches on the floor were thought provoking, and you stood on principle.

However, it seems that the commendable fiscal oversight that you exercised in that vote did not carry over to votes thereafter. With the Stimulus, the Spending Omnibus, Cap and Trade, and other legislation, government spending is out of control. We do not have enough money to pay for this out-of-control spending. Our children’s liberty and prosperity are being gambled away on federal deficits and the inflation that follows from printing more money to pay them.

The Declaration of Independence clearly states that the authority of the government comes from the people: “Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed.” As concerned citizens, we do not consent to these actions, and we hold that the government is not maintaining the system that the Founders established.

Representative Kaptur, we believe that you are no longer representing your constituents in accord with the Constitution; and to that end, we are openly holding you accountable for your votes and actions. Therefore, we respectfully submit the following grievances:

• You have failed to openly and honestly debate issues with your constituents, and have instead opted to hide behind staff and form letters.
• You have voted on legislation without personally reading its content.
• Your recent votes have contributed to trillions of dollars in federal deficits, and enslaved our children to increased taxation, inflation, and debt.
• You allowed “czars” to assume unconstitutional powers in the Executive.
• You voted for government ownership of American industries at the price of jobs, personal property, and liberty. In doing so, you moved America toward socialism.
• You voted for “Cap and Trade” which will raise our already exorbitant taxes and energy costs while crippling our industries.
• You cast this vote in exchange for $3.5 billion of our tax money to fund another new federal bureaucracy.
• You are about to vote for a healthcare bill that threatens our right to life and the liberty to maintain our health care as we choose. This bill would forever undermine the quality and efficiency of healthcare, lead to government rationing, and move America toward euthanasia and taxpayer funded abortion.

Representative Kaptur, we have not come to this decision lightly. We respect our Constitution and the government it created. But, as Thomas Jefferson wrote of the People in the Declaration of Independence: “But when a long Train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a Design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.”

While we do not want to throw off the Government, we must question those who represent us. We hired you with our votes, and as your employer, it is our right to hold you to standards that are both ethical and constitutional.

Frankly, we do not doubt your passion for the good of our region. However, a large portion of your constituency is disenfranchised, and we respectfully request a townhall meeting with you during your recess, so that you may explain your positions in person, and hear our concerns as citizens and business owners.

Representative Kaptur, the time has come to forgo automated form letters, website updates, and quarterly newsletters. We have reserved the following dates at different branches of the Lucas County Library: August 13th, August 18th, August 25th, and August 31st. We would like to begin a meeting at 6:30pm and have approximately two hours of your time. Please respond by email to or call 419-705-xxxx(admin edit) to schedule a time.

Thank you for your consideration.


Scott and Anna Allegrini
On behalf of your Constituents, the Citizens of the 9th Congressional District of Ohio

I applaud this group for requesting the meeting and for reminding Kaptur that she works for us. Would you tell your boss that you were too busy to meet??

Apparently, this is a national issue and American Thinker has details on just how far Congressional reps are willing to go to ignore the will of the voter - and to use the force of government against those who disagree with them.

I'll keep you posted.


Mad Jack said...

This is a great post. Lately you've been hitting them out of the ball park. Nice job!

I once heard Marcy Kaptur speak at a local bookstore (the only time I've heard her in person) and I felt she did a good job of preaching to the choir. It's past time that Ms. Kaptur and our other elected representatives made themselves available to the mere civilians.

On the topic of security and the public availability of elected officials, I would like to point out that if officials continue to hide themselves and the workings of government behind the blue wall, they are making themselves vulnerable during their next election. All their opponent needs to do is begin answering the phone and addressing the problems and concerns of the people.

Maggie Thurber said...

Thanks Mad Jack!

As for the security - I agree. There is, however, a difference between hiding and not making public appearances versus not publishing the time/location of all public appearances...

But it sure does make it hard to find a representative and speak to them....

Jack McHugh said...

I couldn't help think of the item below when I read the "nice talk with a staffer" phrase. Polite, civil, businesslike, etc. all fit, but dealings with politicians out to screw us are like getting a traffic ticket - "nice" is not an adjective that appplies.

(I know you already know all this Maggie, and apologize for jumping on a particular turn of phrase).

From Mackinac Center Tea Party Activist Toolbox (

Tea Party activists aren't impressed that their politician is a "nice guy."

Being likeable isn't needed for a person to succeed in America. An insufferable jerk can build a billion-dollar corporation from scratch, employ thousands, save the whales and cure cancer.

What he can't do is win an election. To gain votes in a democracy a candidate must be likeable. The reason political campaigns feature photos of the candidate's family and pets is not because they want voters to assume that he or she has a responsible record on taxes and spending.

Therefore, the last thing that should ever impress a Tea Party activist is a politician who's a "nice guy." Simply put: They're all nice guys, so get over it and ignore it. Hold them accountable for their deeds rather than their smile. The Tea Parties were a reaction against a lot of very nice guys doing very bad things.

Maggie Thurber said...

ah, Jack, let me agree and disagree.

I'm a big fan of the Mackinac Center and completely agree about the 'nice politician.'

But the staff person I spoke to was NOT the politician.

I've had plenty of conversations with staff who work for elected officials who are not nice, not polite, not professional, etc... (a certain new county commissioner who hired a Blade reporter as his assistant comes to mind).

It was a nice conversation I had with the staffer who was helpful, comprehensive and businesslike. Even though she was certain I wasn't looking for the information so I could show up with flowers for Marcy, she did not let my opinion on her boss's positions influence the way she handled my call. Complimenting the staff person for the way she handled my inquiry, especially in light of all the negative press representatives are getting over their meetings, is an appropriate thing to do.

I hope you'll agree that there is a difference.

Desiree85 said...

This letter is excellent. I have attended a Children of Liberty meeting and I will tell you this group knows their stuff. The crap and tax presentation was awesome.

Yes, Marcy, you do need to meet with and hear us. We are your boss. We have the right to know how our money is being spent. We have the right to ask you questions. We have the right to know what constituents are telling you do do by know the numbers of the yes and no votes on a certain issue. How do we know if you are working for us or the special interest that add to your campaign warchest. You do need to be accountable to us, the voters. You signed onto this gig. It's part of the job. Now put on your big girl panties, man up and answer our questions.

How about making it easy for her. We can meet in front of her office at the Maritime Building.

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