Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Waxman Does Townhall Meetings (Not!)

Talk to Me! (Shut Up!)
Congressman Henry Waxman visited South Torrance last night (August 19).

Supporters in large arrays attended the function at Arjay Plaza on the corner of Hawthorne and Lomita Blvd. The forum was also advertized in the Daily Breeze.

Even though the ad gives the impression that the function was a town hall meeting for South Bay residents, a few constituents were not allowed to attend.


Sandra Goetz shared her displeasure with me and on Facebook that she and a few others were not allowed to enter the function. Why? Because they did not have a "D" after their name on their voter registration card.

She wrote:

We tried to get into the Waxman meeting last night in Torrance.  We were told that we could not go in unless it said democrat on our voter registration card.

This was from Jimmy Gow, their leader.  We held a sign asking when Waxman would hold a town hall.

Congressman Henry Waxman has claimed time and again that he is bipartisan, wants to work with the other side on issues. However, time and again he evinces a steady resistance to anyone attending his public functions who disagrees with his policies, or even those who are interested in holding him accountable for his record, and especially those who would prefer to see someone else representing them in Congress.

I have experienced his public rejection of voters' First Amendment Rights. He shut me down in an open forum in Redondo Beach, and he apparently did the same thing to a voter in Venice.


Yet on August 19, the Torrance Democratic Club announced his arrival in a flyer, with no mention that the meeting was for Democrats only.

What is Waxman afraid of? Why is he displeased with allowing voters to disagree with issues?

By the way, Congressman Waxman does not seem to consider the interests of South Bay voters pertinent or even important, since he has fewer staff in the Manhattan Beach office. When I called the South Bay office, I was automatically transferred to his Los Angeles office. What gives?

Now for the real kicker. The secretary at the Los Angeles office told me that the August 19 meeting was OPEN TO THE PUBLIC!


There is no excuse for a public official picking and choosing his audience and excluding certain people just because of their voter registration. There is no excuse for a representative to claim that he wants to speak with voters and visit with constituents, yet when members of the public arrive, they get turned away.

If Waxman is working in Congress for his district, then he has the responsibility to represent all of us and present himself to all of us.

Then again, for decades Waxman had been picking his own constituents with the help of political-machine comrade (and now retired) Howard Berman and Howard's brother Michael. As long as Sacramento politicians decided the boundaries for Congressional and state legislative districts, then Waxman could choose his voters, rather than the voters choosing their representatives.

The Citizens Redistricting Commission changed all of that. However, Waxman criticized this reform in the same open forum (which was not open to me), and he shared that every state should have adopted the reforms of citizens' drawing district boundaries, not just California

As if!

Call Congressman Henry Waxman’s office, and tell him to practice some truth in advertising and stop rejecting constituents who want to visit and speak with him! Demand that he hold a real town hall meeting, one which everyone can attend.
And find out why his Manhattan Beach office is understaffed: the South Bay (and the 33rd Congressional District) deserves better!

Henry Waxman’s Los Angeles Office

5055 Wilshire Boulevard, Suite 310
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Phone: (310) 652-3095 / (323) 651-1040
Fax: (323) 655-0502

1 comment:

  1. Addendum:

    Jimmy Gow, President of the Torrance Democratic Club, reported his side of the story:

    All Democratic Clubs are open to the public, no matter what affiliation.

    The three individuals denied entry were protesting, and Mr. Gow would not permit them to enter because he feared that they would disrupt the meeting.

    A Republican did enter, Mrs. Porter, and she was allowed to ask Congressman Henry Waxman a question.