While the impeachment of Donald Trump was at the top of mind at Gearhart’s congressional town hall Monday, U.S. Rep. Suzanne Bonamici fielded questions about the federal deficit, foreign policy and her position on equal rights.
But overall it was the topic of civility that dominated evening, the fifth of sixth town hall events in the state.
“it is so important for us to have a conversation with those whom we disagree in a respectful way,” Bonamici said. “I don’t think that’s being very well modeled at the top. It’s unacceptable. We can all start modeling respectful behavior of each other.”
Urged by some in the audience to take a more aggressive position in challenging the president, Bonamici said that “you find partners on issues and get things done. We have to work together to get that common ground.”
Again it was impeachment that dominated the minds of many, including Clatsop County GOP chairman Bob Shortman, who challenged Bonamici on the decision to pursue an impeachment inquiry designed to “hinder his re-election.”
“I’m not doing this because it’s political, I’m doing it to defend the constitution,” Suzanne Bonamici replied.
Ultimately, Bonamici extended a desire to reach out across the aisle.
“You find partners on issues and get things done,” she said. “There are 435 members of Congress and everybody there wants the same things. They want the nation to be secure, they want good schools. They want good jobs and a strong economy, they want clean air and water. They want good health care. They just have different ideas how to get there.”
Among the audience was state Rep. Tiffiny Mitchell, who is facing a potential recall vote herself.
“I appreciate how many people came out,” Mitchell said after the town hall. “Clearly we had a lot of folks at this event that maybe don’t agree with the congresswoman’s position on certain things. But it was a completely calm and peaceful gathering.”