Congresswoman Suzan DelBene’s return to Washington State’s 1st District from Washington, D.C. this spring has been filled with opportunities to engage with her constituents.
Last week, she held a town hall event at Lake Washington High School in Kirkland, where those in attendance could ask her questions and share their thoughts about the issues that matter to them. Constituents from cities including Kirkland, Bothell, Redmond, Woodinville and Duvall filled the stands in the school’s gymnasium to hear what the congresswoman had to say on everything from health care to Syria.
DelBene was asked what her constituents can do to support her efforts, and she told them to not only speak up for what they are against, but also what they support. She specifically cited the constituent feedback on the recent Republican-proposed replaced for the Affordable Care Act.
“People spoke up, they spoke loudly, and it had a huge impact,” she said.
When the conversation turned to Syria and Pres. Donald Trump’s recent missile strike, DelBene said she wanted to ensure that future military actions have congressional approval.
“I do believe that this Congress and this president need to talk about congressional authorization for use of military force,” she said. “We have to provide that authorization going forward.”
She spoke about a variety of issues related to the president, including Russian involvement in the 2016 presidential election, Trump’s tax returns and his administration’s lack of enthusiasm about issues such as climate change.
“This is going to be an issue that we all have to stand up for,” DelBene said of the latter.
Elected officials from Kirkland, Bothell and King County were also in attendance, including Kirkland Mayor Amy Walen, who introduced DelBene.
“I’m really happy that you’re all out here to support our congresswoman,” Walen said.
While most attendees were vocal about their support for DelBene, some in the crowd did voice frustration when she did not give clear yes or no answers to some of the questions raised, including whether or not she supports House of Representatives Bill 676, which would establish the “Medicare for All” program.
“No one bill is the solution for health care,” she said in one response to a question about the bill.
DelBene has been hosting a series of town halls in the last month. She also held them in Snohomish, Redmond and Ferndale, and she has another planned for 6-7:30 p.m. April 21 at Mount Vernon High School.
More information about DelBene and the work she is doing in the U.S. House of Representatives can be found online at delbene.house.gov.