Van Hollen is contemptuous of opposing views

September 04, 2012

I read with some amusement your article about Rep. Chris Van Hollen's participation in the Obama re-election campaign ("Van Hollen gains unexpected role in the Obama campaign," Aug. 26).

While Mr. Van Hollen spends his time traveling around the nation making speeches, I have been quietly meeting and talking with voters around the new 8th Congressional District, which now includes most of Carroll and Frederick counties in addition to parts of Montgomery County.

Your article presents it as a remarkable achievement that Mr. Van Hollen has "breakfasted with small business owners in Westminster" and "shaken hands at the Montgomery County Agricultural Fair."

Since the April 3 primary, I have made 28 campaign stops in Frederick County, 29 in Carroll County and 38 in Montgomery County. There I have repeatedly encountered voters who were frustrated by the apparent disdain in which Mr. Van Hollen holds his constituents by never showing up and by contemptuously brushing off their calls or emails if they do not share his political persuasion.

More amusing, however, was the statement from an Obama campaign spokesperson touting Mr. Van Hollen's "economic expertise." This is a man who has never signed the front of a paycheck, and who has never held down a real job outside the political arena except for a brief stint as a lawyer-lobbyist. Who are you trying to kid?

Ken Timmerman, Kensington

The writer is the Republican candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives in Maryland's 8th Congressional District.

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