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Shelbourne writes: "The exchange between Sen. Patrick Toomey and the man led Bethlehem, Pa., police to remove the man, who law enforcement said they would charge with disrupting a public meeting and disorderly conduct."

Senator Pat Toomey. (photo: Matt Slocum/AP)
Senator Pat Toomey. (photo: Matt Slocum/AP)


Man Arrested for Asking 'Threatening' Question at GOP Senator's Town Hall

By Mallory Shelbourne, The Hill

06 September 17

 

ocal police are reportedly planning to charge a man who attended Sen. Patrick Toomey’s (R-Pa.) town hall after he asked the senator a question that was perceived as “threatening.”

The exchange between Toomey and the man, reported by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, led Bethlehem, Pa., police to remove the man, who law enforcement said they would charge with disrupting a public meeting and disorderly conduct.

According to the Post-Gazette, Simon Radecki of Northampton County asked Toomey a question about a family member in an effort to talk about immigration.

“We’ve been here for a while. You probably haven’t seen the news. Can you confirm whether or not your daughter Bridget has been kidnapped?” Radecki asked the senator.

After several seconds, Radecki then said, “The reason I ask is because that’s the reality of families that suffer deportation.”

Tim Fallon, the CEO of PBS39, which aired last week’s town hall, described the exchange to the newspaper as “one of the scariest things that I have ever been a part of.”

The incident caused the American Civil Liberties Union of Pennsylvania to come to Radecki’s defense, however.

The group’s legal director said the ACLU would “love to talk” to Radecki should he require legal assistance.

“You aren’t going to show that intent, and the disruption stemmed not from his question but the response to it,” Vic Walczak, the legal director, told the Post-Gazette.

A spokesman for Toomey called the question “reprehensible.”

“Asking questions that are based upon kidnapping a child is not only reprehensible, but it is inherently threatening,” Steve Kelly told the newspaper.


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+63 # PeacefulGarden 2017-09-06 14:40
It is time to move to another country. I mean this. This country has gone completely crazy. The DACA thing is absolutely crazy. This man's arrest is crazy. What the hell is going on?
 
 
+59 # ktony 2017-09-06 15:07
Those GOPpers sure scare easily.
 
 
+13 # RLF 2017-09-07 04:24
They know that the working people of this country will eventually get their crap figured out and come for them...problem is they never know the moment and once that moment happens it is too late for Faux news or Breightbart to do anything about it.
 
 
+22 # chrisconno 2017-09-06 22:26
Does that mean if you ask a senator how would they feel if their town were being bombing like we are bombing the middle east would you get arrested for scaring the senator?
 
 
+27 # lfeuille 2017-09-06 23:13
This has got to stop. Threatening questions? And laughing at Sessions is a crime. These people need a brush up course on the constitution. I hope some wacko judge doesn't legitimize this outrageous behavior on the part of law enforcement.
 
 
+23 # jwb110 2017-09-06 23:56
Pat Toomey seems to have forgotten that politics is a contact sport. Standing on his high horse about a question is the dumbest thing I have ever heard. If he, as an elected official, doesn't have the testicles to answer a question he should not be in a public office that requires him to answer question. All these white GOP Congressmen are turning into bigger cry babies than they were before Trump. If he thinks a question is threatening what will he do when the debate ramps up? And it will.
 
 
+14 # maverita 2017-09-07 00:32
like arresting that woman who laughed when Jeff Sessions was introduced as a compassionate egalitarian... crazy days.
 
 
+11 # maverita 2017-09-07 00:33
like arresting that woman who laughed when Jeff Sessions was introduced as a compassionate egalitarian... crazy days.
 
 
+21 # MJnevetS 2017-09-07 03:13
"Asking questions that are based upon kidnapping a child is not only reprehensible, but it is inherently threatening,” Steve Kelly told the newspaper. Apparently, questioning our elected leaders is no longer a constitutional right. The question was clearly an attempt to get a politician to actually emote and for a fleeting moment understand what a family might experience when a loved one is ripped from them. Not by a kidnapper, but from the stroke of a legislator's pen, or their vote. If he is convicted, our Constitution is a fairytale. A pretty story we tell or children which they can hold dear, based upon pure fancy.
 
 
+26 # ericlane 2017-09-07 03:38
This is why we have to vote every Republican out of office.
 
 
+16 # angelfish 2017-09-07 08:21
Laughing at an elected or appointed Official is now a Chargeable Offense. Free Speech is also biting the Dust! What's next? Time to look for Greener Pastures...?
 
 
+18 # Kootenay Coyote 2017-09-07 08:24
Free Speech, anyone? I guess it’s dead….
 
 
+11 # Jim Rocket 2017-09-07 09:32
This is how democracy ends. Little baby steps towards totalitarianism . Matt Taibbi may well be right that the DACA thing is a way to weed out moderate Republicans... the few that might be left.

On another topic I signed a petition to preserve net neutrality that went to Pat Toomey. I got a response yesterday that he feels net neutrality is an attack on the freedom business owners, an example of government legislative over-reach. So he's all for getting rid of net neutrality. What a fine man!
 

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