April 11, 2017

Yesterday's Ted Yoho (R-FL) Town Hall started off on the wrong foot. How else would a discussion of real problems and issues faced by the majority of Americans turn out when hosted by a far-right Republican?

Gainesville area constituent Scott Hunter hosted a seder outside yesterday's town hall because, appallingly, it coincided with the first day of Passover. Ted forgot that Florida has its fair share of Jewish voters, or he simply doesn't care, or both, who knows?

Hunter said, “Every Jew in Gainesville had to make a decision tonight,” he said. “They could either celebrate their freedom of religion with their family or their freedom of speech here.”

Yoho's assertion that defunding and closing Planned Parenthood(s) to 'save lives' was not something this educated audience would permit unchallenged.

One Williston woman who said support for the organization is also personal to her. She relied on Planned Parenthood for healthcare and birth control for most of her young adulthood.

Yoho defended his vote to defund the organization by saying he doesn’t believe the federal government should have the role of providing healthcare for everyone.

“This is not about women’s health,” he said, which was met with displeasure from much of the crowd. “My fight is with no taxpayers’ money going to any organization that does abortions.”

After he claimed that they were killing babies (not ever federally funded), one woman irately shouted out, you're killing WOMEN!

On climate change, Yoho denied it was caused by human activity. A local environmental scientist then asked a question that made the crowd give her a nearly 30-second standing ovation.

“Please explain why your opinion as a non-expert in the field is more valuable than empirical evidence supported by 97 percent of climate scientists who’ve spent their lives studying this?” she asked.

The crowd was very much against his anti-gender neutral bathroom views, cuts to after school programs and education in general. This was not his kind of crowd.

The only commonality between the constituents and the Congressman? He agreed with the investigation into Russian meddling in American elections and he eventually acquiesced that Trump should show his taxes. Thank goodness for the small things.

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