Andy Harris, in his position as Chairman of the House Subcommittee on Energy and The Environment, had the award winning documentary crew responsible for ‘Gasland’ arrested to keep them from filming a hearing on the environmental effects of gas procurement practices.
This was a stunning break from congressional tradition. Congress rarely interferes with highly regarded journalists and filmmakers regardless of whether or not they have proper credentials. The arrest occurred over the objections of Democrats on the committee and after Harris’s office refused to return the calls of the documentary crew, which had sought proper credentials to film the hearing. The footage likely would have been used in a follow up to Josh Fox’s ‘Gasland.’
This action broke every standing tradition of the House of Representatives which, in most cases, takes extra care to avoid trampling on the constitutional rights of the press. This of course begs a couple of questions; most important of which is what did Andy Harris feel the need to hide?
When asked about the arrest during a campaign dinner Wendy Rosen had this to say; “This was not a permit issue, this was a first amendment issue. Andy Harris has once again shown that he did not seek public office to represent his constituents, but rather to represent the extreme fringe of the Tea Party movement, lobbyists, and corporate interests. This was not just a break with the traditions of Congress; it was a failure of both judgment and common sense. Andy Harris failed in his obligation as a Congressman to uphold the Constitution.”
Harris Votes Against Post Office... then Abuses His Franking Priviledge!
Waste of $21,000 in franking indicates hypocrisy
DelMarvaNow August 6, 2012
On Monday, Rep. Andy Harris hosted an emergency preparedness meeting in Berlin. He advertised this meeting by sending out 60,000 self-serving postcards. Harris told us these cost 35 cents each. That's a total of $21,000. Only about 30-35 people attended. That means taxpayers spent about $650 to get each person to the meeting. A notice in the newspaper would not have cost anything, but Harris wouldn't have gotten his free election-year advertising.
June 14th, 2012 Easton, MD - Congressman Andy Harris held town halls yesterday in Easton and Ocean Pines. During the hour-long session, Harris took questions from postal workers, environmentalists, and others. While the Congressman worked hard to avoid giving meaningful answers on a host of issues he showed, once again, how out of touch he is with the needs of his constituents and the issues that affect the Eastern Shore.
The most telling moment was when Harris was asked about his commitment to protect the Chesapeake Bay by a Talbot County resident. Harris’s response was that “regulation had not done anything to improve conditions on the Chesapeake Bay.”