Recently the MDJ published a letter from a Mr. Brandon Becker asking if Congressman Loudermilk’s staff had ever hung up on a constituent and then complained that the congressman never held town halls, choosing the speak to organizations instead. My question for Mr. Becker is why was he hung up on? I doubt he was having a nice, pleasant conversation when he suddenly and unexpectedly heard a “click” disconnecting him. More likely he was being belligerent to the staff.

Democratic Congresswoman Lucy McBath’s staff recently locked the door and called the police on constituents who wanted to talk to her staff on her stance on impeachment. Where’s the righteous indignation by Mr. Becker? Is it missing because he “strenuously disagrees” with Mr. Loudermilk, but “strenuously” agrees with Ms. McBath?

The fact is Mr. Loudermilk is meeting with constituents where his constituents can hear from him, ask questions and have their voices heard without progressive activists trying to take over and disrupt. There are also security concerns. Mr. Loudermilk has been shot at at least twice and death threats against members of Congress continue to grow.

I was with Mr. Loudermilk recently when he spoke to the KSU College Republicans. That meeting was open to all, and sure enough, there was one student, a self-proclaimed socialist, who tried to monopolize the Q&A, making sure others who had questions lost the opportunity. This student used the platform to tell Mr. Loudermilk his ideas were wrong, his facts were wrong, he was a liar and was just belligerent. Mr. Loudermilk tried several times to end it saying politely, “we’ll just agree to disagree” before he was able to move on.

I have been on the staff of two congressmen, Newt Gingrich and John Linder, and I have received calls cursing me out because of my bosses’ stance. No staffer should have to tolerate screaming obscenities from someone who “strenuously disagrees,” constituent or not. If more people took the attitude that you can disagree without being disagreeable, that all had a right to be heard, and mutual respect and civility for all, even those we “strenuously disagree” with, should be the rule, not the exception, then maybe it will be worthwhile to hold town halls again. But if they are just going to be opportunities for activists to lambaste, obstruct, jeer and threaten, a town hall isn’t worth anyone’s time.

Jason Shepherd

chairmain, Cobb GOP



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