Letter to the editor icon2

Letter to the editor icon2

Phone-y town halls

US Senator Steve Daines' recent “phone in” town hall meetings are an absolute mockery of an open exchange between the people of Montana and their elected officials. Senator Daines’ town halls are well orchestrated and closely controlled events.

Audience participation is pre-screened and censored by his staffers who only choose a limited amount of questions. You are notified with a robocall only an hour in advance that the town hall even exists. Ironically, the questions chosen are the most often favorable to Steve’s views. This is not a forum for healthy dialogue. Town halls are meant for public discussion and transparent and debatable issues that need to be expressed by all sides. Steve talks a big game about listening to all of his constituents, but almost all of his appearances are in front of selected audiences.

Steve knows firsthand how unpopular his policies are. This is why he chooses to not hold public town halls. Instead he spreads lies that “We the People” are just a low-life mob collecting a few bucks to protest. Nonsense Steve. I wish I was paid to protest. And if it is unpopular, the next question follows: who is their agenda benefiting? The folks with lots of money who don’t stick around for the photo op.

Is Senator Daines so afraid of controversy that he must hold sham town hall meetings that feel more like a dictatorship than a democracy?

Well, we have our phones and our voices. Call Senator Daines (202) 224-2651. Tell him and his staffers the citizens of Montana deserve real leadership, and the basic respect of talking with us face to face. Tell them no one is paying you to make that phone call. Ask them who is paying them to stay away.

Steve Daines, you work for us. Don’t forget it.

Andy Boyd, Bozeman

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