( – promoted by lowkell)
When I read the distorted article in the Richmond Times-Dispatch regarding Congressman Eric Cantor’s recent visit to Central Virginia, I wondered if I was at the same event or in an alternate universe. I want to set the record straight about what happened outside of Cantor’s private event.
I went to the Holiday Inn off Midlothian Turnpike for an opportunity to talk with Cantor about the jobs crisis that I and so many of my neighbors who are in his district face. I had heard that it was an “Advisory Council” meeting and felt that based on some of the decisions he makes, he needs sound advice. Instead, I was kept outside by the police, treated like some sort of inferior being to be kept away from the view of the more privileged who were let through. We even commented that we felt like trash being thrown to the curb.
I signed up for the meeting through the Internet. I received notification that I was confirmed to attend and they were “looking forward to seeing me there.” When I got there I was told by a Chesterfield police officer that I could not go in and I had to stay outside. We were instructed to stand in a certain area of the complex with a group there holding a rally about the need for jobs. I, and other confirmed participants, told the police that I had signed up for his event, tried to show them my registration, but I was not let through.
While the jobs crisis seriously affects all segments of our communities, I wanted to share my plight. I hold two graduate degrees and have years of career experience but I have not been able to find suitable work for several years. When a friend told me that Rep. Cantor was having a meeting, I knew I had to be there. We had tried for three weeks to schedule a meeting through his office but were told he is too busy to hold a public meeting on jobs and that he does not meet with individuals. The police were even called on us when we went to his Culpepper office.
I read how Rep. Cantor said his event was open to anyone who signed up. This is not true. We took the appropriate steps, but some were denied access. Why? What do we represent that frightens him? Why has he not held any public town halls or a meeting on the need for jobs? Why is he not willing to hear the tough questions and differing viewpoints? Eric “Pinocchio” Cantor did not tell the truth. He never advertised the event publicly and he didn’t allow in those he didn’t want inside the room.
Also for the record, the crowd was not composed of outsiders, many of the participants were Central Virginians impacted by the economy, in need of jobs and in need of representation that is available, responsive and accountable to them.
Marie Coone, Richmond