Daily 49er

Congressman Lowenthal addresses a thousand Long Beach constituents

Trump supporters greet the Democratic congressman with opposition.

Congressman+Alan+Lowenthal+addresses+the+audience+during+Monday%E2%80%99s+town+hall+meeting+at+Long+Beach+City+College+Auditorium.
Congressman Alan Lowenthal addresses the audience during Monday’s town hall meeting at Long Beach City College Auditorium.

Congressman Alan Lowenthal addresses the audience during Monday’s town hall meeting at Long Beach City College Auditorium.

Stephan Oduntan

Stephan Oduntan

Congressman Alan Lowenthal addresses the audience during Monday’s town hall meeting at Long Beach City College Auditorium.

Ammi Ruiz, Staff Writer

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Congressman Alan Lowenthal, D-Long Beach, held a town hall forum on Monday night to answer constituents’ questions on national issues including health care reform, immigration policies, the environment and civil rights.

Nearly 700 people RSVP’d for the event online, but the crowd was large enough to fill the Long Beach City College auditorium, which has a 1100 person capacity.

Before the discussion began at 6 p.m., two men stood before the crowd with pro-Trump signs. The were greeted with “boos” and generally negative responses from individuals in the crowd, who told the Trump supporters to get out.

“We’re here because we care about our community,” Lowenthal said, before being interrupted by one of the men holding the pro-Trump signs.

“We’ll give you a chance to talk,” Lowenthal said to the man wearing a “Make America Great Again” cap. “As I said in the beginning, everyone will have a chance to talk.”

Three other panelists joined Lowenthal on stage to respond to concerns from the community members, including the Deputy Executive Director for the American Civil Liberties Union, James Gilliam.

The discussion centered largely around health care, with many people voicing their concerns over the future of the Affordable Care Act and their opposition to for-profit corporations involved in the health insurance industry.

The Long Beach Police Department had several officers present at the event, although physical acts of violence did not break out. Several attendees continued to remark against the few Trump supporters who attended the forum.

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