Town Hall Reconnaissance

Democracy in action is a beautiful thing.  Yes it can be loud, rambunctious and annoying; but that is sort of the magic of the system – that it is a spectacle, on both sides.  As the Town Halls circle back to us this month, we see progressives using creative tactics to get their demands heard and Tea Baggers shouting down Congressmen.  All the while ROP is there beside you, helping make sense of this wild democracy. 


As usual, ROP friends are the cool voice of reason at the Town Halls.  We’re calling for real Health care Reform, recognizing the current bills as corporate fluff, and we’re looking to the future, talking about the fundamental need for Comprehensive Immigration Reform in 2010. When you attend the Town Hall in your community (see schedule) bring the progressive message that encompasses our vision for democracy: we want an economy that works for working people – from healthcare, to immigration, to peace – that is the only way to achieve justice!  (Get started with these simple Healthcare demands!)

If you feel like your voice isn’t heard, don’t fret. Make an appointment for your Human Dignity Group to talk with your elected officials in a private meeting. ROP can help you set it up and operate on your own terms!

Town Halls: Our Ulterior Motives

Town Halls come and go every few months and life goes on. We don’t like our lives or political calendars to be run by these political carnivals. We’ll always be present, but this time let’s use the Town Halls as an opportunity to begin dismantling the radical right (aka. Teabaggers), starting in our own hometowns.

But how do we start?!

As ROP founder, Marcy Westerling, suggests in her recent statement on today’s Radical Right in rural Oregon, we need to map out accurate information about who these folks are, what their networks look like and how well they are organized. 

So, while you are at the Town Halls asking great questions of your Congresspeople, also look around and try to answer some of these questions too.

Who are the teabaggers in my town? Who are the loudest voices versus the real leaders? What institutional and social connections do the Radical Right have in my community – are the tea baggers also the local city councilor, the owners of the local pawn shop or the President of the PTA?

Send us what you observe at your Town Hall! We need your eyes and ears to begin to develop our statewide map of the Right. Send your Town Hall stories to



PS. Wondering just how crazy the Town Halls will be this time around? Here are two interesting stories from rural Oregon. Creative democracy in action – Silverton youth bring their message around hunger to Sen. Wyden’s town hall with some creative use of umbrellas! Read the article here.

Though it wasn’t recorded in the Statesman-Journal, ROP got word about one community’s teabagging elected official:. One Stayton City Councilor showed up at a Wyden Town Hall event in Salem and identified himself as a Councilor and a Teabagger, then proceeded to berate and scream at Senator Wyden, disrupting the entire process.