Republicans Are a No Show Across the Country for Town Halls on Gun Action

What a surprise.

The organizers of last month’s March for Our Lives have taken their movement to town halls across the country and invited congressional lawmakers—who have returned to their districts for a two-week recess—to discuss action on gun control. According to the Town Hall Project, more than 130 of these meetings are taking place, with most of the events happening on Saturday.

Though invited, no Republicans appeared at any town halls, and many of the forums featured empty chairs to symbolize their absences.

Mother Jones‘ Kara Voght attended the town hall at Virginia’s 10th congressional district, where every Democratic candidate seeking to unseat Republican incumbent Rep. Barbara Comstock showed up to discuss gun legislation. Comstock, unsurprisingly, refused to attend.

https://twitter.com/karavoght/status/982661276538146817

https://twitter.com/karavoght/status/982663557367189504

https://twitter.com/karavoght/status/982679340294041600

Here are some other highlights from around the country.

Let’s start in Glen Ellyn, Illinois:

Then go east to Natick, Massachusetts: 

Next stop, Fresno, California:

https://twitter.com/ricojfranco/status/982671428569845760

Then back to Buffalo, NY:

Also in New York, this from New York City:

In the midwest, there is a meeting in Ashtabula, Ohio:

https://twitter.com/BetsyRaderOH/status/982695011006537730

But it’s not as if Republicans failed to meet with constituents at all this week. Rep. Ralph Norman (R-SC) hosted a “coffee with constituents” event on Friday, pulled out a loaded gun, and said “I’m not going to be a Gabby Giffords”—referring to the Arizona Democrat who was shot outside a grocery store in 2011.

“I don’t mind dying,” Norman told the crowd, “but whoever shoots me better shoot well or I’m shooting back.”

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TIME IS RUNNING OUT!

We have an ambitious $350,000 online fundraising goal this month and it's truly crunch time: About 15 percent of our yearly online giving usually comes in during the final week of the year, and in "No Cute Headlines or Manipulative BS," we explain why we simply can't afford to come up short right now.

The bottom line: Corporations and powerful people with deep pockets will never sustain the type of journalism Mother Jones exists to do. And advertising or profit-driven ownership groups will never make time-intensive, in-depth reporting viable.

That's why donations big and small make up 74 percent of our budget this year. There is no backup to keep us going, no alternate revenue source, no secret benefactor. If readers don’t donate, we won’t be here. It's that simple.

And if you can help us out with a donation right now, all online gifts will be matched thanks to an incredibly generous matching gift pledge.

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