Democratic congressional candidate Walt Minnick today called on incumbent GOP Rep. Bill Sali to join him in a series of 10 town-hall meetings throughout the 1st Congressional District over the summer, with no moderator, just the two candidates taking questions from the public and expressing their views in a “polite, productive setting.” Minnick said Congress faces “complex problems,” from health care to gas prices and energy policy to education, and voters need to hear where the candidates stand on them, well beyond 30-second sound bites or scripted TV commercials. “I know it would help me to be a better congressman,” Minnick said. “I hope it would be equally beneficial to Congressman Sali, and I know it would help the voters of Idaho. … I think democracy would work a whole lot better if they could talk directly to the candidates. I very much hope that he will join me.”
Sali’s spokesman, Wayne Hoffman, said he hadn’t yet seen Minnick’s proposal. “Congressman Sali has held numerous town hall meetings up and down the district since last year, both in person and over the phone, and I’m sure he’s planning to conduct many more town hall meetings to interact with constituents,” Hoffman said.
Sali said this morning that he was “very pleased” with last night’s primary election results. “Any time you get 60 percent or better, it’s a good strong win,” he said. Minnick was unopposed in the Democratic primary, after two opponents dropped out earlier.
“We’re going to have a tough campaign for the fall, there’s no doubt about it,” Sali said. “I think our job is to let people know the differences between Walt Minnick and Bill Sali. … On just about everything important issue, Walt and I are just 180 degrees different from each other.”