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Nazareth, Pa., United States

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Congressman Cartwright Gets Friendly Reception at NCC Town Hall

Matt Cartwright
When Congressman Charlie Dent faced 400 angry people at Hanover Township Community Center a few weeks ago on a cold and rainy day, it was hard for him to speak more than a few words without being interrupted by numerous catcalls over Trump's attempt to repeal and replace Obamacare with something that Dent himself refused  to support. But the weather and mood was much brighter last night, when Congressman Matt Cartwright faced a friendly crowd of about 90 people at  Northampton Community College's Alumni Hall. One of the messages he repeated frequently is that "democracy really works."

Northampton County is split between Dent, whose 15th Congressional District extends along Route 78 to Dauphin County, and Cartwright, whose 17th Congressional District extends north to Carbondale.

Bethlehem Township Commissioners Tom Nolan and Malissa Davis were there, along with Palmer Township Supervisor Ann Marie Panella and Easton Mayor Sal Panto. NorCo Exec hopeful Lamont McClure attended, along with County Council hopefuls Bill McGee and Tara Zrinski. Easton City Council candidates Terrence Miller and Taiba Sultana were spotted, as was Saucon Valley School Director candidate Tracy Magnotta.

Cartwright began the town hall by introducing and praising many members of his staff, outlining their specialties. Then he got down to business, answering questions written in advance by members of the audience. From time to time, someone would blurt out a question, and he answered those, too.

About 90 people at Cartwright Town Hall
Obamacare. - Cartwright said that he and Dent are in the same neighborhood. "There are a lot of problems with ACA (Affordable Healthcare Act). It's too expensive on some groups. It has deductibles that are too high on some other groups, and it involves some taxes that disparately impact some groups and some industries." He spoke of some taxes he considers unfair, like the Cadillac tax and the bedpan tax. "It actually hurts some of the manufacturers right here in the Lehigh Valley." But Cartwright observed that "we've moved the needle on this discussion. It used to be, 'no way, no how,' on anything like the ACA, but now it's, 'Let's make it work.'" He is hopeful that a bipartisan solution can be achieved "to work out the kinks in the ACA and make it work for everybody. That's what the American people want."

Trump Budget. - Cartwright believes Trump never laid eyes on his proposed budget,and that it was hatched "in the basement of the Heritage Foundation." He said "it is dead on arrival." He noted American people will oppose many of the cuts to popular programs.

Appropriations Committee. - "I really enjoy working on the Appropriations Committee," Cartwright said. It's a position he shared with Dent.

Trump Tax Returns. - Cartwright explained that there is a Bill to force Trump to release his tax returns, but that because Republics are in charge of the House, "they control what bills come up for vote in committee." He also noted that even if such a bill were to pass the House and Senate, it would have to go to the White House for Trump's signature. "Raise your hand if you thin he's gonna' sign that."

Social Security - Cartwright supports SS2100, an attempt to extend the solvency of social security. He noted that Schuylkill County has 150,000 people and 38,000 are on social security.

Regulations. - Cartwright opposed and voted against the Scrub Act because there were no hearings. "I don't call them regulations, I call them protections."  He admitted "there are some bad regulations out there that need to go but we need to work on them one at a time."

Trump.- "Make no mistake, I am not here to trash Donald Trump. He won the election," said Cartwright. "Not by a majority," someone in the audience muttered. "He won it by the rules that are laid out and I have to work with him." He likes Trump's desire to invest $1 trillion in infrastructure, but not by tax credits to private corporations.

Next President.- "Not me."

Gerrymandering. - Like Dent, Cartwright explained that redistricting is done by the state legislature, not Congress. Speaking of his own district, he asked, "Did you ever see a map of my district? That is a shape that does not occur in nature."


Anonymous said...

Soros/OFA doesn't pay their protesters to disrupt Democrats.

Anonymous said...

neither do they pay to disrupt repugs.
why would the Orthopedic Foundation for Animals pay for protesters?

Anonymous said...

Northampton county should be served by one congressman not two, how did we get here?

Anonymous said...

606...still a believer of trump lies. I was at Dents and took comp leave to be there. Dent had a decent day but ended on a sour note when he state Trumo should not have to release his tax returns. So much for transparancy they demanded from Romney and Obama. Where does Cartwright stand on Trumos tax returns and disclosure of the Whitehouse visitors log.

On a side note: $10Ms spent on19 rounds of golf and counting within the first 100 days. History has been made...this time for real.

Anonymous said...

Are you saying that the George Soros paid protesters don't attend Democratic town meetings?

Anonymous said...

I'd rather see Hillary's deleted emails than Trump's tax forms.

Anonymous said...

@7:32 When did Democrats give a damn about Presidential expenses before President Trump. Were you bitching about Michelle's junkets to South Africa and other places around the world with her large entourage to satisfy her "spiritual fulfillment" ?

Anonymous said...

actually republicans used to care about travel expenses.
every time President Obama took a vacation or played a round of golf.
they seem to be silent now that Comrade trump has been golfing and on vacation.
matter of fact even trumpie cried about President Obama playing golf.
guess it is ok now as he is being a hypocrite.
as to First Lady Michelle let's compare with all the junkets the Bush family engaged in.
curious how the right wing has a short memory about things.

Anonymous said...

I just wonder if Obama’s Illegal-Alien Aunt has been kicked out of the country yet ?

Anonymous said...

i wonder if trump is going to deport Melinia for lying about working while on a visitor visa?
maybe he can build a wall around her.

sezary said...

...and the petty political bickering gets us where? All anonymous too. Such children. And they wonder why we are where we are. Perhaps they should look in the mirror.

Bernie O'Hare said...

Jeff, Of the ten comments before yours, all but one are disgustingly partisan.

Anonymous said...

It's a fact the Koch Brothers network pays and has paid protesters and Trump supporters at rallies. Live with it goes both ways

Anonymous said...


I don't normally comment, but even Republicans and conservative watch-dog groups (like Judicial Watch) have called Trump's travel expenses extraordinary and unprecedented.

Obama spent $98 million on business and leisure travel over his 8 years in the white house. Trump is on track to surpass that in his FIRST year! Trump spent at least $20 million in his first 80 days. He's spent 13 weekends in Mar-a-lago since his inauguration in January. And don't forget, this is his own COMMERCIAL property. So, in addition to his personal expenses, all of the hotel rooms and meals for the federal employees he has to take with him are paid for by the government and go into his pocket. He's exploiting his public office for private gain.

Not to mention, the Palm Beach County sheriff's office spends $60,000 per day when he's there and the City of New York spends $146,000 per day to provide security for Melania, who has thus far refused to live at the white house. AND the Secret Service has had to rent an entire floor of Trump Tower, once again, putting more money in Trump's pocket.

Anonymous said...

12:59. Since when have Democrats been so budget conscious ?

Anonymous said...

"Are you saying that the George Soros paid protesters don't attend Democratic town meetings?"

Of course. Why would disgustingly partisan Soros pay his gangs to protest his own team? His investment in protesters seemed to backfire at the polls this last cycle.

Anonymous said...

Vote for Bill O'Reily!

Unknown said...

It was an interesting evening although I am still partially deaf from the woman behind me screaming approvals. Sort of made me happy I forgot my hearing aid. I did like the fact that he claimed to want to work with Republicans in a bipartisan manner, but his 43 NO votes on the past 50 bills to come to the House floor makes me a bit skeptical. But I have hope and, although I don't agree with almost all of his positions and didn't vote for him, he is still my congressman.

Anonymous said...

"12:59. Since when have Democrats been so budget conscious ?"

They waited until Obama exploded the debt to $19 trillion. Everybody has a price. Theirs is apparently $19 trillion.

Disrupting town halls is a great American tradition. Tea Partiers showed up with torches and pitchforks. Now, lefties are showing up with vagina hats. It's a mostly free country.

Anonymous said...

The difference between Republican budgets and Democrat's budgets is that Dem's feel you should pay for what you spend and Repub's believe you should just put it on the tab while claiming you oppose tax increases.

Anonymous said...

747. Exactly! They also defer replacing a "leaking roof", call the unused $ a surplus and then give a happy meal tax cut while doscussing floating another bond