Wednesday, December 7, 2011

NPR: Unemployed Arrive on Hill, MD's Rep. Chris Van Hollen One of Few Legislators to See Them

NPR had an interesting story this morning about unemployed protestors arriving on Capitol Hill today. Some of them traveled many, many miles to get to our beautiful and booming DC metro region. The article focused on the interaction between Democratic and labor-aligned groups with #occupy protestors, but I think that's a silly story.

The real story is in the photo they published on their website with the story:

Read the full NPR article online

Are we so far from the Mr. Smith Goes to Washington ethos now that politicians won't even listen to dissent coming from constituents? The NPR article highlighted the frustrations of some who sought to meet with their duly elected officials:
"This is very frustrating," said Morales, an unemployed 68-year-old who recently took in her out-of-work granddaughter and her two children. "We come here all the way from Wisconsin, and they lock the door. Come on."
Throughout Tuesday, demonstrators visited the offices of about 99 House and Senate members, from both parties, and most were refused meetings with lawmakers.

About 25 people from Maryland actually got face time with Democratic Rep. Chris Van Hollen. He emerged from his office and spoke to the group, telling them he sympathizes with the unemployed.

THANK YOU.  To other members of Congress: was that so hard? It is amazing to me that we could be at a point where we should feel thankful to be able to meet our elected officials. This story comes off the heels of a previous Maryland Juice story about Rep. Donna Edwards addressing crowds of protestors outside of a Democratic Party fundraiser.

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