Letter: From Ayotte, a hollow promise
Several of us had the opportunity to meet and stand with a courageous young woman Tuesday: Erica Lafferty, the surviving daughter of Sandy Hook Elementary Principal Dawn Lafferty Hochsprung. We were attending Sen. Kelly Ayotte’s town hall meeting in Tilton, but Lafferty, above all, had an extremely personal reason to do so, given Ayotte’s recent vote on background checks.
Unfortunately, Ayotte was there to deliver her message rather than listen to the citizens in the room. In fact, state Sen. Jeb Bradley admitted he had weeded out those audience questions on gun control, saying “she answered in great depth at the beginning of her town hall (and) talked about her vote on guns. . . . She addressed it.”
Ayotte “talked about her vote on guns” by using her own PowerPoint slide show, not in response to her audience. She came in and left by a side door so she didn’t see the numerous signs, on both sides of the background-check issue, seeking to catch her attention at the front door.
Bradley remarked that Ayotte was fulfilling her promise to hold town meetings regularly throughout the state. What a hollow promise! An hour-long meeting with 40 minutes taken up by a slide show leaving 20 minutes for (prescreened) questions does not meet most definitions of open availability by an elected official.
Ayotte’s slick slide-show presentation and avoidance of the elephant in the room was a disappointment and a dereliction of her duty to her constituents. She should be reminded that she serves all the people of New Hampshire, not just those who voted her into office.