Rep. Kelly Participates in WICU “TV Town Hall” on Government Shutdown
WASHINGTON — Representative Mike Kelly (R-PA) participated in a “TV town hall” interview yesterday with WICU 12 News of Erie in which he responded to questions from constituents regarding the ongoing partial government shutdown. The interview, conducted by reporter Ted Fioraliso, took place in Rep. Kelly’s congressional office in Washington, DC and involved the congressman responding to questions posted on WICU’s Facebook page earlier in the week. Excerpts from Rep. Kelly’s remarks are reprinted below.
Question: How does he feel about veterans being arrested for visiting closed memorials?
Rep. Kelly: “First of all, I think I’m the same as every other American — I’m outraged at this. … I’ve actually been down to the memorials. We’ve had some of our friends from back home come here, and were denied the ability to get there, so we were able to get it open and get there with them. Although, we did pass … right away we passed … H.J. Res. 70 that does open up these parks. … The Senate’s had a tough time picking up anything that we do, and I think that that’s probably one of the things again that’s very disappointing. People talk about the government being shut down. The government did not have to be shut down. We voted, and we passed, a joint resolution to keep the government open. Now Mr. Reid has refused to even address that.”
Question: Why did the Republicans let it get this far before they took a stand on Obamacare?
Rep. Kelly: “Well, we didn’t let it go that far before we took a stand. I’ve been here now for three years. I think – and again, it’s not just Obamacare – the Affordable Care Act is one of those pieces of legislation that is a bad law. And I would think that when you look at the polling across the country, Americans overwhelmingly are saying, ‘No — a bad law, we need to do something to pull it back.’ We’ve been working very hard to get that done, but again, this is the president’s signature piece. Mr. Reid refuses, and the president has refused so far, to sit down and talk with us about things we think that would make it more sensible for the American people.”
Question: What moves are House Republicans considering to push the Senate to pass some of the individual spending bills that Harry Reid is refusing to consider?
Rep. Kelly: “At this point, the American people have to also weigh in on this. We cannot, as one party, continue to carry this banner forward without the American people weighing in. And I would just suggest to our friends back home that are listening, this is not a Republican issue or a Democrat issue for me. This is an American issue. We also have two Senators that represent us. Both Senator Toomey, and you’ve got to get a hold of Mr. Casey too, and let him know: tell the leader of the Senate to bring these things up.”