Barletta Bans Recordings At Town Halls — Newly minted coal-country congressmen Lou Barletta (R-Pa11) and Tom Marino (R-Pa10) have sparked fears they have gone Potomac by instituting recording bans at recent town hall meetings.
Barletta has denied the claim saying the event at which he banned personal recordings was a “private” meeting.
To which he had opened to the old media who of course were given permission to record.
The congressmen’s actions were motivated by orchestrated attempts by Democrats to infiltrate the town halls with unruly disrupters whose antics would be recorded and placed on the YouTube in the hope it would indicate widespread grassroots opposition to Republican policy.
It was an effort to mimic action in 2009 and 2010 by Tea Partyers which led to big Republican gains last November.
What should be remembered, however, is that it wasn’t the angry protestors who made the Democrat incumbents look bad but their responses to them. The incumbents, perhaps most famously Arlen Specter, were recorded being abusive, mocking and dismissive to them, after which they arrogantly ended constituent meetings completely.
If Barletta and Marino follow that path they will be one-termers.
If they, however, let them obscenely and abusively vent and are judicious in their response the strategy will backfire badly on the Democrats.
The Republicans simply have to make sure they have their own recordings to put on YouTube.
It remains to be seen if they are smart enough to do this.