Hundreds pack town hall meeting hosted by Rep. Charlie Crist

AP Photo

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.  (WFLA) –  Hundreds of constituents packed the room of a town hall meeting hosted by Democratic Congressman Charlie Crist.

The event took place at the University of South Florida’s St. Petersburg campus.

It was the former governor’s first town hall since winning the state’s 13th Congressional District seat after beating incumbent Republican David Jolly in November.

He addressed the crowd to a standing ovation, telling constituents “I’m very honored to serve you.”

Crist spent well over two hours discussing topics ranging from healthcare to the economy and jobs.

During the meeting, several constituents expressed their concerns about President Trump and his policies.

“I want to know what you’re going to do about the immigration problem separating mothers from children,” asked one constituent, his voice shaking as the crowd supported his query with thunderous applause.

And some constituents were not satisfied with the questions being asked.

“What they didn’t ask about was the rise of Anti-Semitism, against transgenders, against gays and lesbians,” Jim Jackson of St. Petersburg told News Channel 8. “I want to see Charlie Crist speak out about those things.”

Others told WFLA they’re happy with Crist’s performance thus far as their voice on Capitol Hill.

“I write to him every week,” said Gina Rothlein of St. Petersburg.  “I send him an email to remind him about immigration so I was satisfied with that.”

Some constituents voiced concerns over President Trump’s promise to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.

Crist has changed positions several times during his political tenure, but now claims he wants the law to stay in effect with a few fixes.

“I think that the Affordable Care Act has provided an awful lot of good for an awful lot of people,” he told News Channel 8 on Saturday.

When asked about other lawmakers, like Senator Marco Rubio, who refuse to host town hall meetings because they’re too “hostile,” Crist told WFLA, “Everybody has their own style. I’m not here to criticize other members.  I think it’s important to hear from people.  My dad always used to tell me and my three sisters God gave us 2 ears and 1 mouth and it’s good to respect His ratio and listen twice as much as you talk.”

Coming up on Sunday morning at 9:30, join News Channel 8’s Paul Mueller with an in-depth interview with Representative Crist.

 

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