Sen. Roy Blunt's 'tele-town hall' meeting disappoints critics

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KSPR) - Lawmakers have been answering tough questions in heated town hall meetings for months. Missouri Senator Roy Blunt will talk with voters, but not in the same room. His critics aren’t happy.

Protesters have been coming to the senator's office to get his attention for years with no response from him, until now. Senator Blunt is doing a town hall meeting. You will have to call in to ask a question.

It's frustrating because Emily Bowen-Marler is one of the protestor who's been trying to get Senator Blunt's attention.

"We have grave concerns about the healthcare bill that was just passed in the house, and I really hope Senator Blunt takes some time to meet face to face with constituents," said Emily Bowen-Marler.

That's the only way protesters say they'll really be heard and get to ask the tough questions in person instead of on the phone.

"In the past I have listened to these calls and there might have been only one non-softball question," said said Marla Marantz.

She says she thinks the Senator is trying to avoid meeting in-person because of what's been happening to lawmakers across the country.

"It shouldn't be that you have to try to ambush your representative," said Marantz.

Angry voters have been shouting about their concerns in heated town halls. But Senator Blunt wouldn't talk with us either. Instead his press secretary emailed a statement saying in part that Senator Blunt has visited every county in the state three times. The statement goes on to say that the tele-townhall is another tool to help him hear directly from Missourians and to answer their questions. But protesters say answering questions over the phone is not enough.

"It's so easy to be distracted by other things that are going on," said Emily Bowen-Marler. "If you really care about your constituents, you'd take the time to be in the space with them.

Town hall over the phone starts at 6 p.m. If you want to be in on that tele-town hall meeting, you have to sign up online. Click HERE.