Rep. Tonko hosts town hall meeting
Posted at: 07/16/2012 11:21 PM
By: Dan Bazile
COLONIE -- A small crowd all fired up, sparked a lively debate outside the Meeting House at The Crossings in Colonie as they anticipated Congressman Paul Tonko's arrival. Not all of them were there to support the congressman. It was more like an even split with some pushing to replace Tonko with Republican Bob Dieterich.
"Because of his constant liberal agenda. He votes lockstep with Nancy Pelosi no matter what," said a woman holding a sign calling for Toko's removal from office.
At the heart of the crowd's discourse were jobs and the Affordable Healthcare Act, issues that became the central elements of what was supposed to be an open town hall forum.
"It's very important to recognize, I believe from forums like this there's a great sentiment for powering the middle class," Tonko said.
Tonko started the conversation with the need to invest in the middle class, small businesses and research and development. He said those efforts will help strengthen the economy.
"Businesses provide jobs and we understand that," Tonko told Newschannel 13. "Creating the environment that best produces that result is important."
As for the Affordable Healthcare Act, the two sides still vehemently disagreed for different reasons. Many of those who want it repealed say the law will cost too much in the long run and the country cannot afford it. But the benefits are appealing for those who support the law.
"There are major improvements that people understand are valuable and I think it's the dialogue like this that raises awareness of what's in the Affordable Health Care Act," Tonko said.