The franked mail piece arrived this past week:
It certainly looks like a campaign mailer, but it’s franked and that means it’s paid for by taxpayers.
At a town hall on April 5, 2012 in Clinton, Missouri:
Representative Hartzler (r): ….What other questions do you have? [pause] Everybody bashful now, now?
Question: Congresswoman, I, I came today with an agenda item. I received your flyer and I see this young man over here. Who paid for this flyer?
Voice: We did. [Voices: “We did.” “We did.”]
Question: Taxpayers. [Voice: “We did.”]
Representative Hartzler (r): Yeah [inaudible].
Voice: We did.
Question: Yeah. [Voice: “We did.”] How much did we pay for mailing privileges since January, July one of two, twenty eleven? Do you know?
Representative Hartzler (r): I don’t know, but I bet you do.
Question: Over two hundred thousand dollars [crosstalk] to send stuff.
Representative Hartzler (r): I knew you would know. I could tell. [laugh]
Question: It, it’s in the Congressional Record.
Representative Hartzler (r): I know. I know, it’s open record. Anybody can get it.
Question: And I’ve asked to take my name off the list ’cause we’re gonna save thirty point oh three six cents next time this mailer comes out. [Representative Hartzler ( r): “Okay.”] If we did that with every member of Congress how much money would we save? I didn’t do that math. But if we’re gonna look for cuts why don’t we cut this type of stuff. I’m sorry, this is a political mailer. You could send me a little postcard and ask for the same information you get here.
Representative Hartzler (r): I, I hear you. And, um, we’ll certainly consider that, you know. The budget, though, we don’t have a, a slide up here, but I wanted to show, the budget is so out of whack, not that we can’t save money with that, but we could totally shut down all of, uh, the departments in Washington, including Congress as well as the national defense and we still wouldn’t have a balanced budget. So, it’s that serious and, uh, you know, we did take a five percent, I took a five percent cut in my office budget when I first took office. This year we cut seven percent. So, we have taken steps to cut, uh, cut our own budgets and we felt like, I felt like we need to lead by example. If we’re gonna ask other ar, uh, departments to cut then we need to be the first to do that. And, and so we did. So we do our spending less money than before, but I think it’s important to communicate with the, the people, uh, of the district and to let them know where their offices are. You’ll see on that flyer we have our phone numbers for the offices are. We have our, uh, email address, the web site, and we get between five hundred and a thousand emails and phone calls a week from people this, on, district. And that’s because that’s what we’re here to do. We’re here to serve you, work for you. And so we try to help people get their VA benefits or whatever it is. So, uh, I think there’s some value for the taxpayer knowing where these phone numbers are, how they can access us, and so that’s part of it. But, I hear what you’re saying.
Question: I was wrong, it was a hundred and sixty-seven or so thousand dollars.
Representative Hartzler (r): Yeah. All right. Thank you. Yes, sir….
“….But, I hear what you’re saying….”
This e-mail was forwarded to us:
From: Representative Vicky Hartzler [XXXXX]
Date: Thu, May 3, 2012 at 8:36 PM
Subject: Just One Week Left to Subscribe!
The main way I stay in touch with constituents is through my weekly email newsletter. Every week, I send interested constituents a report on votes and activities in D.C. and questions for their input. However, according to the rules of the U.S. House of Representatives, a Member of Congress enters a “black-out period” 90 days before a primary or general election in which the Member’s name is on the ballot. During this “black out period,” the Member is unable to communicate with any constituent who has not “opted-in” to their email list.
According to my records, you have not yet opted in to my newsletter. Accordingly, after May 9, 2012, I will not be able to share information with you via email, unless you decide to opt-in today. Because your ideas are important to me, I encourage you to take a moment to opt-in now.
Additionally, I would urge you to follow my Facebook and Twitter pages that can be found by clicking the icons in the upper right hand corner of this message.
It’s an honor to be your voice in Congress-thank you for the privilege of serving you.
Member of Congress
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Rep. Vicky Hartzler (r): frankly, the importance of being Vicky (December 11, 2011)
Rep. Vicky Hartzler (r): frankly, it’s all about wedge issues (November 22, 2011)
Rep. Vicky Hartzler (r): Who needs the NRA… (September 17, 2011)
Rep. Vicky Hartzler (r): franking right wingnut propaganda on Medicare (August 27, 2011)