Politics

Chris Collins Will Not Hold Town Halls

'Because what you get are demonstrators who come and shout you down and heckle you'

Rep. Chris Collins, R-N.Y., prefers one-on-one meetings to town hall gatherings. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call file photo)

Despite his colleagues’ continued attempts, New York Republican Rep. Chris Collins has no intention of holding a town hall meeting.

“Because what you get are demonstrators who come and shout you down and heckle you. They are not what you hope they would be which is a give and take from people actually interested in getting some facts,” Collins told WGRZ-TV in Buffalo.

Collin’s comments come in the wake of an increase of protests at town halls held by Republican members of Congress since President Donald Trump’s election. Many in the audience are loudly voicing concerns about President Donald Trump’s policies and GOP plans to repeal Obamacare.

Collins was the first member of Congress to officially endorse Donald Trump during the presidential election.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, faced boos from angry constituents at a town hall Thursday in his home state. Chaffetz felt the ire from those who feel the congressman isn’t doing enough to challenge Trump regarding potential conflicts of interest in his job as the chairman of the House Oversight Committee.

Chaffetz and others who have faced rowdy audiences say that in addition to constituents, outsiders are paying for people to disrupt their meetings.

Buffalo Rising, a local online news publication, reported on a GoFundMe campaign to pay for a billboard aimed at Collins and his lack of town hall events. The ad would feature Collins dressed as Where’s Waldo with the headline “Where is Chris Collins? [Western New York] would like a word… Host a Town Hall meeting, Mr. Collins.” 

The campaign, which is reportedly sponsored by a group called Citizens Against Collins, has reached its fundraising goal. 

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