"No experiment can be more interesting than that we are now trying, and which we trust will end in establishing the fact, that man may be governed by reason and truth. Our first object should therefore be, to leave open to him all the avenues to truth. The most effectual hitherto found, is the freedom of the press. It is, therefore, the first shut up by those who fear the investigation of their actions." --Thomas Jefferson to John Tyler, 1804.


Having attended a few of these … you gotta say, it’s an impressive feat, 600 county town halls over the last 15 years or so.

It sounded at first like another campaign pledge to be sloughed off later. But Senator Ron Wyden has kept at it, after starting in Fossil, and he’s become masterful at managing them.

He put out the video (elsewhere on the page) on occasion of town hall 600 – not near an upcoming campaign, which is years off – and remarked, “Thank you for helping make me a better senator and a better person.” Probably they have.

They’ve probably also made him a better politician. The usual line about members of Congress, that they’ve become too remote and far away from the non-metro center, falls flat when the member of Congress religiously visits every year.

So, a thought expressed before, reiterated here: Every member of Congress ought to do this. Oregon’s junior senator, Jeff Merkley, has, and probably will reap the benefits too. So could any of the 100 senators, or (on a smaller scale) the representatives.

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