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Niki Tsongas in Fitchburg 1-9-13

by Datechguy | January 10th, 2013


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Niki Tsongas in Fitchburg 1-9-13

Wednes­day Con­gress­woman Niki Tsongas came to the Fitch­burg Pub­lic Library for her first event in Fitch­burg since being sworn in as the rep­re­sen­ta­tive in con­gress for the 3rd district.

tsongas 001

The event: “Con­gress on your Cor­ner” con­sisted of one on one (or two on one) meet­ings with var­i­ous con­stituents from the district.

tsongas 002

The for­mat was sur­prise to most of the peo­ple who arrived expect­ing a town hall-​style event. At least one per­son who came decided to leave think­ing the for­mat was not con­ducive the type of open pub­lic debate she was look­ing for.

Per­son­ally I think the one on one setup is a good idea. Most peo­ple don’t get a chance to meet their rep­re­sen­ta­tive in con­gress let alone get pri­vate time face to face.

The event was announced through robo-​calls (I received one myself), through the local paper. and via her site. I arrived about 30 min­utes early and only a hand­ful of peo­ple were wait­ing but by the time Con­gress­woman Tsongas arrived the crowd con­tin­ued to grow until it was well over 35.

Local Pols were well rep­re­sented no fewer than 4 mem­bers of the Fitch­burg City Coun­sel attended. Mayor Lisa Wong was there, and State reps Jen Flana­gan & Steve DiNa­tale also came.
tsongas 004

Con­gress­woman Tsongas met the local pols en mass near the start She com­mented those meet­ings are impor­tant because “…they are tasked with man­ag­ing the affairs of the community.”

tsongas 008

Due to the num­ber of peo­ple there about 3 min­utes were allo­cated per per­son (or pair who choose to go in together) but even with a short period of time the I think it’s a good thing for vot­ers to meet their mem­ber of con­gress one on one.

Local repub­li­cans were well rep­re­sented. A reg­u­lar guest to my show Mary Lotz had some time with the con­gress­woman and was unimpressed

Peo­ple had dif­fer­ent agen­das, the Local Imam Bashir Uddin Mehmud & his son came to intro­duce him­self and the local Ahmadiyya Mus­lim Com­mu­nity to the con­gress­woman while Robert Landry had a ques­tion con­cern­ing film-​making in Devens. Both were inter­ested in a local con­gres­sional office in the city.

The Press was well rep­re­sented, the Worces­ter Telegram and the Sen­tinel & Enter­prise were both there talk­ing to both vot­ers and Con­gress­woman Tsongas. When the event was over the Con­gress­woman gave me a few min­utes of her time.

She did say she would be doing town halls both stan­dard and electronic.

Her aides were very coop­er­a­tive (one is a HUGE Dr. Who fan) and the Con­gress­woman took some time to speak to me as she left. As one of her con­stituents I stressed cut­ting spend­ing first on the budget.

I’m sure over the next two years we will be dis­agree­ing a lot and I’ll be call­ing her on those dis­agree­ments but as for this event, I think it was a proper use of her time. There is no more impor­tant thing a mem­ber of con­gress can do than meet with the peo­ple who elect them.

Wednesday Congresswoman Niki Tsongas came to the Fitchburg Public Library for her first event in Fitchburg since being sworn in as the representative in congress for the 3rd district.

tsongas 001

The event: “Congress on your Corner” consisted of one on one (or two on one) meetings with various constituents from the district.

tsongas 002

The format was surprise to most of the people who arrived expecting a town hall-style event. At least one person who came decided to leave thinking the format was not conducive the type of open public debate she was looking for.

Personally I think the one on one setup is a good idea. Most people don’t get a chance to meet their representative in congress let alone get private time face to face.

The event was announced through robo-calls (I received one myself), through the local paper. and via her site. I arrived about 30 minutes early and only a handful of people were waiting but by the time Congresswoman Tsongas arrived the crowd continued to grow until it was well over 35.

Local Pols were well represented no fewer than 4 members of the Fitchburg City Counsel attended. Mayor Lisa Wong was there, and State reps Jen Flanagan & Steve DiNatale also came.
tsongas 004

Congresswoman Tsongas met the local pols en mass near the start She commented those meetings are important because “…they are tasked with managing the affairs of the community.”

tsongas 008

Due to the number of people there about 3 minutes were allocated per person (or pair who choose to go in together) but even with a short period of time the I think it’s a good thing for voters to meet their member of congress one on one.

Local republicans were well represented. A regular guest to my show Mary Lotz had some time with the congresswoman and was unimpressed

People had different agendas, the Local Imam Bashir Uddin Mehmud & his son came to introduce himself and the local Ahmadiyya Muslim Community to the congresswoman while Robert Landry had a question concerning film-making in Devens. Both were interested in a local congressional office in the city.

The Press was well represented, the Worcester Telegram and the Sentinel & Enterprise were both there talking to both voters and Congresswoman Tsongas. When the event was over the Congresswoman gave me a few minutes of her time.

She did say she would be doing town halls both standard and electronic.

Her aides were very cooperative (one is a HUGE Dr. Who fan) and the Congresswoman took some time to speak to me as she left. As one of her constituents I stressed cutting spending first on the budget.

I’m sure over the next two years we will be disagreeing a lot and I’ll be calling her on those disagreements but as for this event, I think it was a proper use of her time. There is no more important thing a member of congress can do than meet with the people who elect them.

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