NJ congressional representatives hold bipartisan town hall

Three of New Jersey’s representatives in Congress held a bipartisan town hall meeting Tuesday to discuss military issues.
Republican Rep. Tom MacArthur and Democratic Reps. Bonnie Watson Coleman and Frank Pallone held the meeting at the Lawrenceville National Guard Armory. They said that while bipartisan town halls are rare, they are glad they held the meeting.
“In New Jersey it’s possible, so we’re glad to be here,” Coleman said.
“Elected leaders, leaders of all kinds need to demonstrate that we can disagree without being disagreeable,” said MacArthur.
The representatives met with members of the National Guard and their families to answer questions about issues important to them, such as military benefits, education, the national debt and gun control.
“I think our congressional delegation recognizes the needs and concerns of the soldiers and airmen of the New Jersey Army Air National Guard are important enough that they should be coming together to work together and talk about the issues,” said Maj. Vince Tirri.
The event was planned well before the weekend unrest in Charlottesville, Virginia and the controversial comments made by President Donald Trump Tuesday. But those in the audience and on the panel said that it makes this type of meeting feel more important.
“This was an opportunity to do something that is sort of nontraditional in terms of town hall. We’re excited to be here,” Watson Coleman said.
“I think this is what America needs,” MacArthur said. “Just dialogue about the issues, respectfully disagreeing as we answer different questions.”
All three politicians said that they would like to see more of these types of bipartisan meetings.