RIP the People’s House, 1789–2017

May 9, 2017

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By Donna Smith, Executive Director – Progressive Democrats of America | The Hill

As the U.S. House of Representatives ends its historic role as the People’s House, Americans know a few things more clearly than they did just 104 short days ago. Money talks. Absolute power corrupts absolutely. And joined together, money and power have begun the painful, purposeful dismantling of the Constitution and the protections it has offered for the past 228 years.

No doubt, as the vote on healthcare trumpets for all to see, Trumpublican Speaker Paul Ryan will take his victory lap as if exactly the opposite were true. Alternative facts above all else.

Over the past several weeks, Americans throughout the nation have appeared at town halls to express their deep concern about the repeal of the Affordable Care Act. Millions have called, written, marched, yelled, begged, demanded and struggled to be hear. Bold, worried and committed constituents have documented this clearly.

In Florida, one constituent polled those assembled; they indicated their preferences and they did so clearly and respectfully. The Tampa Bay Times shared this video of one of those interactions, as constituents asked Rep. Gus Bilirakis to represent the will of the people.

In Colorado, Rep. Mike Coffman was elected to represent a richly diverse district where working-class people, immigrants, veterans and seniors live and sometimes struggle to be heard. They showed up to a town-hall meeting to express their concerns, and Coffman ducked out. At later town halls, he developed an intricate system of hearing only mild criticisms. Snipers and security protected him at later public events from constituents fighting for healthcare.

Coffman sees his constituents as enemies. The local NBC affiliate, 9News in Denver, shared the video of Coffman running out of his January 2017 town hall. By April, the congressman had perfected his shtick; hundreds endured long waits and tight security — as if by the very nature of their being they were to be guarded against. The local newspaper, the Aurora Sentinel, wrote up the meeting. One thing was made perfectly clear to all in attendance. The people this man was elected to represent were being lectured, not represented. No matter the demand of the people, Coffman stands with and represents the quintessential Trumpublican mumbo-jumbo.

In Florida, one constituent polled those assembled; they indicated their preferences and they did so clearly and respectfully. The Tampa Bay Times shared this video of one of those interactions, as constituents asked Rep. Gus Bilirakis to represent the will of the people.

In Colorado, Rep. Mike Coffman was elected to represent a richly diverse district where working-class people, immigrants, veterans and seniors live and sometimes struggle to be heard. They showed up to a town-hall meeting to express their concerns, and Coffman ducked out. At later town halls, he developed an intricate system of hearing only mild criticisms. Snipers and security protected him at later public events from constituents fighting for healthcare.

Coffman sees his constituents as enemies. The local NBC affiliate, 9News in Denver, shared the video of Coffman running out of his January 2017 town hall. By April, the congressman had perfected his shtick; hundreds endured long waits and tight security — as if by the very nature of their being they were to be guarded against. The local newspaper, the Aurora Sentinel, wrote up the meeting. One thing was made perfectly clear to all in attendance. The people this man was elected to represent were being lectured, not represented. No matter the demand of the people, Coffman stands with and represents the quintessential Trumpublican mumbo-jumbo.

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SIGN THE PETITION! If Democrats want to win & take our country back from the billionaire class, they need to back the #PeoplesPlatform.
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