To the Editor:
I took part in Jeff Van Drew's telephone town-hall event Nov. 21. The event was a chance for constituents to ask questions via the phone or email.
I am writing this to record what I heard on that call, as well as to note the points that I was unable to make, as my questions were not taken.
Van Drew, a Democrat, was one of only two Democrats not to vote for the impeachment inquiry into Donald Trump. He calls himself a blue-dog moderate and attempts to supplement this by saying that his goal is to look forward and make progress on issues important to the American people and his constituents.
This outlook could be seen as admirable and acceptable, and indeed, according to the town hall, it was by most who called in and were able to pose their questions and perceptions; however, as a Democratic constituent, I found it odd that the majority of those who got the time were self-proclaimed Republicans. Not that it matters much, as we are all, Democrat or Republican, his constituents.
What was maddening though, was to hear my Democratic congressman steer clear of truths while refusing to use truths against his constituents' misunderstanding and lack of knowledge surrounding the Trump debacle.
For instance, Van Drew kept telling his constituents, who were frustrated with the impeachment and believed Trump is being treated worse than any other president, that we had to look forward because Congress could get no work done.
He left out the fact that over 400 bills have passed the House and stalled in the Senate. He was told about this fact by another caller, but attempted to downplay it and essentially blame the impeachment proceedings.
He stated that we have to get back to a place of making concessions to one another, and on this, he believes that we should stop focusing on Trump and allow the 2020 election to sort things out.
He left out the 100-plus contacts between the Trump campaign and Russian officials outlined in the Mueller Report; the 10 counts of obstruction of justice laid out in part two of that report, nor would he acknowledge that no indictment came due to the Office of Legal Counsel guidelines on indicting a sitting president.
He also left out the fact that now, multiple career government officials have testified that our president undermines and puts at risk our national security by implementing personal policies rather than our formal national policies.
This isn't a Democrat or Republican issue - this is a rule-of-law issue.
My Republican friends want to try and deflect with the Biden and Burisma investigations, and that's where Van Drew needs to find compromise.
We can and should investigate any potential violations of the rule of law that we are all held to equally on a non-partisan basis, not to using compromise as a way to move forward while allowing the rule of law to be trampled, to start creating this idea that if the law doesn't apply to him, why should it apply to us.
Trump, in his own words, violated law by inviting foreign interference in our election. This puts our national security at risk.