Sunday, April 19, 2009

Murphy gets hammered with questions in Torrington


TORRINGTON — What began as an opportunity to discuss stimulus money for Social Security benefactors sidetracks to concerns about the economy and gay marriage, when U.S. Congressman Chris Murphy, D-5, paid a visit to the Sullivan Senior Center Friday.

Murphy dropped by the center along with state Rep. Michelle Cook, D-65, just before lunch at 11:30 to discuss a stimulus provision in which those receiving Social Security will receive a one-time $250 payment. Reports from the federal government state that the checks are scheduled to be sent out in May.

Murphy noted that, while the money is not enormous, it help offset certain costs while providing extra money for those on fixed incomes or those on retirement.
"I wish it was more," the congressman said.

Speaking in front of a largely older crowd, Murphy then was received with several questions from the concerned residents. Several regarded the frustration towards the current economic situation while others — from one individual in particular — centered on the frustration with the current government.

Torrington resident Antoinette Hyde plainly voiced that she wished the government would "stop taking our money in the first place." While Murphy attempted to defend his reasoning for supporting stimulus spending, Hyde pointedly responded with remarks against "socialism," dismissing whether either the Republicans or the Democrats were more efficient in power.
"I think we get a lot of Democratic representation, it doesn’t matter anymore," Hyde said. "They’re all the same."

Cook, who stood alongside her fellow Democrat during his speech and the questions, also chimed in when one person inquired about the proposed SB 899. Cook noted that, while the bill is on the table, the vote will only allow for each state legislator to voice their opinion on it.
The state Supreme Court has made a ruling and Gov. M. Jodi Rell has said she will not oppose that ruling, Cook said.

Murphy and Cook remained at the center as the seniors had lunch, answer questions and having discussions with their constituents.

For more information about the one-time payment visit or call Murphy’s New Britain office at (860) 223-8412.


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