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Donnelly Sees Supportive Crowd At Muncie Town Hall

By Stephanie Wiechmann, IPR News | Published on in Local News, Politics
US Senator Joe Donnelly answers questions from the press (left) and from constituents at a town hall meeting in Muncie (right). (Photos: Stephanie Wiechmann)

Indiana US Senator Joe Donnelly faced a mostly favorable crowd of several hundred people at a Muncie town hall meeting Sunday.  As IPR’s Stephanie Wiechmann reports, Donnelly was asked about a number of proposals from the President’s administration.

By the clapping and head-nodding, most people agreed with Senator Joe Donnelly’s dislike of the GOP-written American Health Care Act and his views on climate change science, new technology jobs, and getting more Americans to turn out to vote.

There was a single round of boos – but not for Donnelly.  Nathan Crapó of Muncie asked Donnelly to “do your duty” and commit to voting for Neil Gorsuch, President Donald Trump’s nominee for the Supreme Court.  On a scratchy microphone, Donnelly calmed down those booing, saying everyone has a right to an opinion.

“And my duty involves actually listening to him answer questions that are put before him on the Senate Judiciary Committee.”

Gorsuch’s Congressional confirmation hearings begin Monday.

When asked about President Trump’s budget, Donnelly it was “an initial document” and said he’d work with his colleagues in Congress to stop proposed cuts to social programs, the arts, and medical research.

“I promise you it’ll be changed.  It’ll be changed to become much more sensible.”

While thanking Donnelly for holding a town hall meeting, Kathy Badger of Anderson received a round of applause for invoking the name of Indiana’s other US Senator – Republican Todd Young.

“Would you go down and please see Senator Young and tell him he also works for the state of Indiana?”

An online petition and protesters in Bloomington recently asked Young to hold a similar town hall meeting.  Young’s office has not responded.  According to the Senator’s social media, he has spent time in the Evansville area, visiting with military veterans and a domestic violence prevention organization.