To the editor:
The three small town halls that Erik Paulsen conducted late last month were insufficient to make up for the many, many years he has not had one. The demand for them has been great. But, until he had the competition of Dean Phillip’s many town halls for the past year, he didn’t feel he needed to do one, telling us his telephone town halls were good enough for us.
I “won the lottery” last week and was able to attend Paulsen’s town hall in Chanhassen, and was even able to ask a question. Wow, I’ve waited 40 years living in Edina to be able to do that. I have called Paulsen’s office many times concerning his votes and have tried to meet with him at his office (in small groups). I’ve emailed him repeatedly. I most definitely have not felt “represented.” Paulsen seemed to have prepared answers for questions and often evaded answering the questions, or he gave what seemed dishonest answers.
He didn’t seem to know that he was talking to some well-informed voters who do extensive research and know his voting record. He tried to charm with fast talking double-talk. He tried to imply that his votes have been “bipartisan” but they have been anything but that. His votes are radical. A moderate he is not.
I have attended three of Dean Phillips’ town meetings since he’s declared himself a candidate, and there’s no comparison between how he conducts one and how Paulsen does. Dean talks slowly and with conviction. When questions are asked he really listens and thinks before he speaks. He has had people of all political stripes in his audiences, so he’s had tough questions.
Even though I appreciated having the opportunity for a real town hall, somehow with Rep. Paulsen, it just didn’t seem like one. I look forward to real town halls that Dean Phillips will be conducting regularly when he wins in November.
Mary Jo Straub
Click here to read the original posting on the Sun Current (6/21/18).