‘Town Hall for All’ gets no love from Utah’s congressional delegation

Posted at 5:38 PM, Feb 23, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-23 19:38:46-05

SALT LAKE CITY -- Since a rowdy town hall crowd chastised Congressman Jason Chaffetz at Brighton High School on February 9, Utah's congressional delegation has avoided public appearances where they might experience something similar.

Chaffetz's experience was replicated in districts around the country, and the decision to avoid town halls has also spread. Now citizens' groups are getting creative for the chance to question their representatives and senators.

In Nevada, a group of activists paid to attend a business luncheon so they could confront Senator Dean Heller and Representative Mark Amodei.

In Montana, a crowd of demonstrators waited at the state capitol building to talk with Senator Steve Daines after he spoke with state legislators.

And in Utah, a collection of groups is organizing what they call a "Town Hall for All", which they'll hold at Cottonwood High School at 6:30 p.m. Friday.

Madalena McNeil, founder of Utahns Speak Out, is one of the organizers of the town hall. She hasn't been involved in politics for long.

"I guess technically about two or three weeks," McNeil said. "I've always been interested in politics and social justice, but I didn't get active until really recently."

McNeil invited all of Utah's federal delegation with no takers, but three state legislators will be on-hand: Representatives Brian King, D-Salt Lake City, and Angela Romero, D-Salt Lake City, and Senator Todd Weiler, R-Bountiful.

After a conversation with the elected leaders, attendees can learn how to get involved with any of the co-sponsoring organizations. See the links below for details:

Utahns Speak Out
Utah Indivisible
Salt Lake Indivisible
Alliance for a Better Utah
Lupus Foundation of America, Utah Chapter
Utah Moms for Clean Air
Athletes For Clean Air
Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance
Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment
Green Party of Utah
SLC Air Protectors
Planned Parenthood Action Council of Utah
Utah Rivers Council
Utah Trout Unlimited
Indivisible Ogden
Indivisible Utah County
Wasatch Mountain Arts/Wasatch Mountain Film Festival
Iranian American Society of Utah
Utah Chapter of Backcountry Hunters & Anglers
Queer Friends
Mormon Environmental Stewardship Alliance
Coalition of 57
Fair Redistricting Caucus of Utah
Utah Chapter Sierra Club
Comunidades Unidas
Term Limits Convention - Utah
Healthcare Rights Coalition
Constitution Party of Utah