From Rep. Rangel’s office
“This is an exciting new experience for me,” said Congressman Charles B. Rangel, as he welcomed a core group of bloggers who joined the 21st-term lawmaker in his first-ever bloggers’ conference call, on March 8, 2011, Tuesday evening at 8PM ET.
“Things are changing every day, and the Congress can’t do all that it wants to, especially being in the minority. It’s going to take more than Congress — people like you who has an interest in the country, who can talk with the community,” said Rangel. “This is also very helpful to me to see what you’re thinking, what my constituents are thinking, and that makes me a better representative.”
Moderated by Beth Becker, a leader of the progressive movement in the blogging community, the Bloggers’ Conference Call was Congressman Rangel’s newest attempt to address and champion progressive solutions to our country’s problems during these challenging times by working with online activists and bloggers.
Participants asked a series of questions, ranging from those concerning the “Republican war on State employees” and collective bargaining, to torture and U.S. foreign policy on Haiti.
When asked about his primary goal in Congress, Rangel replied: “Right now, if I had to name one thing that I would have as a priority it would be supporting President Obama. I’ve been here for more than 40 years, and been here through many presidents, but I’ve never seen anyone speak with the courage on the priorities I believe in.”
Rangel reiterated his commitments to education, increasing the number of people in the middle class, reforming the tax system so that the top 1% will not be controlling our resources, ensuring immigrants’ rights, and creating a type of economy where dreams can become a reality.
Overall, the conference call turned out to be a successful opportunity for the veteran Congressman to engage with a new, influential community and reach an audience that he has not previously interacted with.
“Thank you so much Congressman Rangel. I really, really appreciate you for taking the time to come in and dialogue with us via conference call and getting involved with the blogging community,” said a participant.
“This is my first time, but I have to admit, I found this an exciting new adventure and I do hope to do it again soon. I really enjoyed it,” echoed Rangel, as he closed the conference call by thanking the participants and inviting them to continue the dialogue on his Facebook page.
Coupled with the launch of the new website at Rangel.House.gov, Rangel hopes his Bloggers’ Conference Calls and future online townhalls will facilitate greater interaction between the Congressman and the online community to give middle-class America a stronger voice.
Congressman Rangel is currently one of the most active members on social media platforms, with more than 4100 Facebook friends and fans (www.facebook.com/cbrangel) and nearly 4500 followers on Twitter (@cbrangel).
To sign up for Rep. Rangel’s next Bloggers’ Conference Call, please visit his Facebook page (Discussions); or download the Visible Vote app via Facebook or smartphones to join him in his upcoming online townhall.