From: Jim Lee
Sent: Wed, February 8, 2012 12:22:10 PM
Subject: About you headline speaker for your event tonight - Billy Long
Regarding the Washington Press Club Foundation's 68th Annual Congressional dinner this evening and one of your headline speakers.
I wonder if anyone vetted Congressman Long. Long is funny, quick with a quip and --he's an auctioneer, remember-- tells a good story. But as a legislator, he is a dismal failure.
I live in Billy Long's congressional district.
He is an embarrassment to all of us down here.
Long won the seat with 30% of the vote in a bitter, divisive, 7 man primary. In Republican dominated MO7, the real race is in the primary. Historically (since Dewey Short) the general election has gone to the primary winner.
Just yesterday Long was featured as the 'least effective' congressional tweeter. http://bus-plunge.blogspot.com/2012/02/he-seems-amusing-10-most-engaging.html
Long has refused to hold open town hall meetings, refused to meet with constituents, refused access to members of the press to his press briefing and, perhaps most distressing of all, turned over to the F.B.I. the names of six constituents who wrote articles critical of Long, The FBI sent out an agent who, after conducting his first interview with a constituent-- which was recorded -- concluded that these constituents were well within their rights in holding their congressman accountable and that Long appeared to overstep his boundaries.
Long also admitted to sponsoring bills because he was asked by lobbying groups to 'drop a bill' http://bus-plunge.blogspot.com/2011/04/how-much-does-it-cost-to-drop-bill.html The Joplin Globe published this editorial regarding Long's actions: http://bus-plunge.blogspot.com/2011/04/fed-up-with-billy-long-sos-joplin-globe.html
The very first day the House of Representatives was in session, when the constitution was being read, Long was not in the chambers, he was in his office meeting with the "Fair Tax" lobbyist. http://bus-plunge.blogspot.com/2011/01/long-co-sponsor-hr-25-good-job-bill.html
In addition to making Keith Olberman's "Worst Person in the World" --- twice!-- Long's antics while in Washington are discomforting. During the primary, Long tried to pass off his playing in high stakes poker games --some with $25,000 entry fees) as just a way to relax. http://bus-plunge.blogspot.com/2010/10/longs-story-doesnt-jibe-with-casinos.html
Sarah Steelman's video interview (a series of 6) that was posted by Long's campaign to youtube and just as quickly deleted, remains a cult classic. http://youtu.be/mhV77sRyX14
Billy is a combination class clown / bully. Recently at a meeting concerning the closing or rural post offices in MO7, Long said,
"You catch a lot more flies with honey than you do with vinegar. So, when you tell stories about me through some of your representatives that I want to privatize the Postal Service, which is an out and out lie, that doesn't help you any with me or my office. So...."
Unfortunately for Long, during the campaign, he did state he was in favor of privatizing the Postal Service, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and the TVA. http://bus-plunge.blogspot.com/2012/01/you-can-catch-more-flies-with-honey.html
Running as a "tea party" candidate, Long told NPR shortly after he was elected, that he "was tea party before tea party was cool." Long has distanced himself from the tea party in Washington (most likely on the advice of Roy Blunt, his predecessor) but still promotes his involvement when he returns to the district.
Long,who ran as a "Fed UP" candidate has quickly embraced the DC culture. A DC friend who works in government recently met Long for the first time in DC during the course of her job... she told me that "Billy was quite full of himself and really tripping on being a congressman." Not a positive endorsement.
Fed up? You bet we are. http://bus-plunge.blogspot.com/2011/12/still-fed-up.html
Someone should have vetted Long more before he spoke to your group.
Feel free to contact me if you want anymore information.