Congressman Tom Reed holds town hall-style debate
ENFIELD, N.Y. (WENY) -- Thursday's town hall meeting was held at the Enfield Highway Department in front of a packed house. Topics included affordable health care and gun control as people tried to voice their concerns to the Congressman.
"We're still going to continue to show up because having a dialogue is important," said U.S. Representative, Tom Reed. "Representing people, you have to listen to people. So as you got some input here tonight on the farm bill, a very unique provision. Getting that input is the primary reason we do these town halls. Really to try to get that input from the people that are living under these laws day to day."
The congressman also says through his town hall meetings and campaign trail, he plans on calling out what he calls, "Extreme Ithaca Liberals".
"I'm going to call out extremism across the district and I believe the extreme Ithaca liberal brand is achieving that," said Reed. "It is identifying these positions that are extreme. I want people to make sure that they understand the difference between what we support, what I believe is a common sense type of approach to legislating, as apposed to many of the policies that we see that's represented by that extreme Ithaca liberal brand that support this extremist type of policy. That's not good for the country and not good for the area."
According to some Ithaca residents, they think Reed completely missed the mark on the town hall.
"The crowd's responses were pretty indicative that Congressman Reed is in his own head when it comes to a lot of these issues," said Cornell University graduate student," Benjamin Richer. "He said a lot of 'yes, I appreciate that', but he's shown time and time again that that's not true when it comes to voting and actually legislating and representing the people of the 23rd district."
Reed says even though he anticipates the backlash at events like tonight, he will continue holding town halls across the district.
"So I hope this demonstrates to not only people who disagree with us, but the people that agree with us that we're going to carry that message," said Reed. "We're going to take that philosophy and we will put it out there and it's up to the people to make an informed decision as to what they want in their representative."
Tom Reed says he'll continue to work with constituents across the district to find middle ground.