According to a newspaper article Indiana's newly-elected 6th District Congressman, Luke Messer, recently traveled throughout his Republican district for the sole purpose of 'listening to what constituents have to say and to learn what issues concern them'. However, the article indicates that Messer did more talking than listening during his two-day tour of area coffee shops.
Messer, a good little Republican soldier, faithfully followed the conservative talking point script. He pandered to the Tea-Party, repeated outrageous Fox News falsehoods, bashed Hillary Clinton, disparaged President Obama, sucked up to pro-Israeli lobbyists, and blew wet, sloppy kisses to the NRA.
Not that anyone should be surprised by the partisan dialog. After all, Messer's gerrymandered 6th District is 94% white and 65% Republican. Which means that he probably doesn't need to visit a coffee shop in order to learn what issues concern the people who voted for him.
On the other hand, 675,000 hoosiers reside in the 6th District and only 160,000 of them voted for Messer. It may be impertinent for the congressman to presume that the district's other 515,000 citizens endorse his right-wing extremism.
If you're interested, a series of six Coffee Shop Tour cartoons containing actual quotes that spewed from the congressman's mouth will appear daily on the website. Or, if you want, you can see all of the cartoons now in the 6th District Funnies Section.
The "Coffee Shop Tour" newspaper article follows:
Messer Back Home Again For Tour Stop
By Nick Cusack - The Shelbyville News
Saturday, January 26, 2013 edition
U.S. Rep. Luke Messer spoke with constituents in his first return trip to Shelbyville on Friday afternoon. Messer, R-6th District, made a two-day tour of district coffeeshops to talk to voters. He came to Shelbyville, where he maintains a home, and stopped by Linne's Bakery, 115 S. Harrison St.
"This is the first time I've been able to greet you guys as a United States Congressman," Messer told the handful of citizens who had come to see him, after he shook hands with everyone in the shop.
Messer, who serves on House committees on Budget, Foreign Affairs, and Education & the Workforce, discussed the budget, foreign policy and domestic issues he is dealing with his third week in Congress.
He said that the country can't continue to spend and rack up debt, and that Republicans are aggressively attempting to rein it in. "We have a commitment from our House leadership we will stand strong," he said.
Messer also spoke about gun rights, which got him some applause from the crowd. "I think we're starting down the path of standing up for the second amendment," he said. "I will stand up to the president as he tries to take away your guns." Messer said tragedies, such as last month's school shooting in Connecticut where 20 elementary school students were killed, shouldn't undercut people's rights. He said bans don't work and that criminals would find a way to get guns despite the ban.
People in the shop asked Messer about the recent gifts made to Egypt of fighter jets and tanks, which has uncertain allegiances and is politically unstable. The question got Messer talking about Israel.
"This president at best has been ambiguous in his support of Israel," the congressman said.
Messer also said as a member of the foreign affairs committee, he participated in what he referred to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's "dog and pony show." Clinton testified to Congress this week about the Sept. 11, 2012, terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya, that killed Ambassador Christopher Stevens and three other people.
Messer said he was traveling his district to hear what citizens had to say and what issues concerned them.