Illinois Democrat Brad Schneider hosted a rather unconventional town hall this weekend as he and a group of constituents biked 15 miles around his district and chatted about policy issues.
“It was a great opportunity to combine my passion for cycling with the ability to connect with constituents” Schneider said. “We continue to look for creative ways of making those connections.”
The event called “Bike the Tenth” for the Schneider’ 10th District was open to the public and 15 constituents braved a heat index of over 100 degrees to share their concerns with the congressman.
Most divulged worries over health care, the environment and the economy, the congressman said. One constituent talked about how he bears the burden of the tax overhaul and how the elimination of state and local tax deductions are affecting his family.
Constituents also shared concerns of a trade war, the congressman said. Schneider added that he recently visited a manufacturing plant in the district where the owner told him that tariffs on both domestically manufactured and imported steel would increase costs beyond what consumers would accept.
Schneider said that his constituents are “very concerned” about sustainability as a whole, and are unhappy about EPA Secretary Scott Pruitt and his policies. The group also talked about ways they could work to protect water quality in Lake Michigan.
The route began at Naval Station Great Lakes in North Chicago to Highwood and back. The original ride was set for 28 miles and would include a coffee break in the middle, but unseasonable temperatures cut the ride to 15 miles and the group decided to forego coffee for ice cream at Sweet Pea’s in Highwood.
In addition, Schneider has hosted two “Commuter Town Halls” to meet with riders on the Metra train and Pace bus lines through the district. He will be holding the 25th “Congress on Your Corner” town hall on Saturday in Fox Lake.