published Thursday, August 25th, 2011

Protesters target Rep. Fleischmann’s job creation record


by Cliff Hightower
Mark Gilliland, with Chattanooga Organized for Action, right, wears a mask while acting out a political skit as pedestrians bound for the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce's annual meeting pass by Wednesday afternoon in front of the Chattanooga Convention Center.
Mark Gilliland, with Chattanooga Organized for Action, right, wears a mask while acting out a political skit as pedestrians bound for the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce's annual meeting pass by Wednesday afternoon in front of the Chattanooga Convention Center.
Photo by Dan Henry.

A grassroots group in Chattanooga said U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann has not done enough to create or to help his constituents find good-paying jobs.

“This job thing’s going to hit us all, and we’re going to tell him,” said Ash-Lee Henderson, a board member for Chattanooga Organized for Action, which held a small protest Wednesday across from the Chattanooga Convention Center, where Fleischmann, R-Tenn., was attending a speech by Gov. Bill Haslam.

In a mock trial outside the convention center, group members found Fleischmann “guilty” of five counts of failing to help Tennesseans get jobs.

But just across the street, one small-businessman didn’t find the political hijinks and theater amusing.

“I fully support demonstrating,” said Kile Broyles, who was on his way to see Haslam speak, “but they lose credibility when they show disregard for the office the person holds.”

Jordan Powell, Fleischmann’s spokesman, said the congressman understands such protests are part of being in an elected position. But he said Fleischmann’s visit to the convention center is part of the plan for job creation.

“At the end of the day, it’s the private business that’s creating jobs,” Powell said.

About 30 protesters participated in the event organized by Chattanooga Organized for Action and with the Service Employees International Union. One protester dressed as Chucky, the homicidal doll from the 1990s horror-film “Child’s Play.”

The protesters marched to the Joel W. Solomon Federal Building and Courthouse, where Fleischmann’s office is located. They went in and filled out paperwork listing their problems.

  • photo
    Chattanooga Organized for Action has used this poster to promote today's protest against U.S. Rep Chuck Fleischmann, R-Tenn.
    Photo by Contributed Photo /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

Marty Von Schaaf, Hamilton County Republican chairman, said he wasn’t particularly amused by the group’s presentation of the congressman by putting Fleischmann’s image onto a character holding a giant pair of shears about to cut off jobs.

“Look at that poster,” he said. “If that’s not character assassination, I don’t know what is.”

Powell said the congressman is fine with the dialogue and said Fleischmann plans to hold 16 town halls next week, eight in Hamilton County, and would welcome feedback at those meetings.

Chris Brooks, organizer for Chattanooga Organized for Action, said a decision has not been made collectively on whether group members will attend one of the meetings.

“We just want some of the specifics of our questions answered,” he said. “I would hope I wouldn’t have to attend a town hall meeting to get those answers.”

See video and more photos from yesterday's demonstration in the liveblog of the Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting.

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joneses said...

The real protest should be directed towards hussien obama and his intentional destroying of the economy and jobs. This is the same M O the liberals use. Blame your oponents for the failed policies of your own policies. Please people do not fall for this tactic. These protestes are liars.

August 25, 2011 at 6:07 a.m.
twharr said...

@ Joneses, That's odd you just blamed the people who are blaming you and your wing nut theology. And what does President Obama's middle name have to do with Chuckie cutting jobs?? People like you are the reason this country has become increasingly polarized. Sorry that a black man is head of state. Sorry he tries to reach over the aisle. Sorry he tried to bolster jobs. Sorry he gave the go ahead to kill Osama Bin Laden. Sorry he’s drawing down our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. Sorry he appointed General Petraus to head the CIA. Sorry he wants to take the tax burden off the middle class. Sorry he wants all American citizens to be able to afford healthcare. Sorry he wants greenhouse gasses to be capped to improve our environment. You're right...how dumb of me not to think like you.

August 25, 2011 at 7:45 a.m.
frequency13 said...

What are the five counts they find Rep. Fleischmann guilty of, Cliff? You sure do a great job detailing objections to the protest. Why not spend five sentences telling us about their specific grievances?

August 25, 2011 at 8:12 a.m.
joneses said...

twhrr, and all you stated he is doing is in the name of control and has nothing to do with him giving a rats ass about health care for all or the environment. He proved it by buying those diesel plluting busses on his campaign tour last week If the health care bill was so great then why is he not going to be on it? Why are the UAW members exempt from it? why is congress not on it? why did they have to bribe congressman and congresswoman to vote for it. Greenhouse gasses? Do you not realize that global warming is not caused by man but natural occuring atmospheric elemnets and the sun getting hotter? You have been suckered. Read Karl marx and his idea about controlling the masses through environmental regulations. Osama Bin Laden? Do you really think Hussien Obama did that on his own? It took years and years of gathering intelligence from the Bush administration. Reach over the isle? Are you saying when Hussien Obama said "the Republicans can get in back of the bus" he was reaching over the isle? You are a fool if you believe Hussien is reaching over the isle. General Petraus? is this the same General that you liberal fools labeled "General Betray Us" when President Bush was in office? Take the Tax Burden off the middle clas? Hussien Obama wants to destroy the middle class by regulating small businesses out of business and transferring jobs overseas. 600 new rugulation for business in July alone. In his view the middle class in in his way of complete communism. do you know of any communsit country that ever had a middle class? Hussien Obama is not for anything but control of the masses and as long as people like you look at him as your God then he will have his way. Yes, you are correct. How dumb of you to not think and know what I know.

August 25, 2011 at 8:45 a.m.
amnestiUSAF84 said...

twharr, some people would blame President Obama for their children still pooping in their pants by the age of ten.

The truth is the GOP's strategy is to destroy President Obama and the Democratic Party by any means necessary. Even if it means destroying America and Americans. They've sabotaged and blocked every attempt the president has made to get the country Bush and his team screwed back on track. The primary head of the tea party and its wealthy Texan financier is someone whose sole goal is to get President Obama impeached. Again, by any means necessary. They're so focused on destroying America's first known black man in the WHITE PEOPLE'S HOUSE that they don't care they're digging a hold deep enough that they themselves will fall into bringing the entire American society and world along with them.

They're goal is not only to turn Americans against the president, but to turn other countries against him and anyone who looks like him as well. You'd have to read how American news is portrayed in other countries in order to get a full grip on what's taking place and the strategy that's being used.

August 25, 2011 at 9:06 a.m.
twharr said...

Joneses, I assume you're the type that gets your opinions, not facts, from the likes of Limbaugh, O'Reily, Beck and Hannity. You definitely underscored that by referencing Karl Marx. Little do you know Karl Marx was a socialist; you know the same theology you wingnuts think President Obama is trying to convert this country into. I could pick apart the rhetoric you posted, but why should I?? If you're dumb enough to think that President Obama is trying to out-source jobs while helping pass stimulus money to create jobs the point of me debating you any further is null and void. I challenge you to think for yourself, look at Fox News as you would look at Jon Stewart on Comedy Central. Listen to Limbaugh as you would listen to Redd Foxx over an old 8 track. Your thought process including the rest of the tea-party/republican wingnuts are somewhat third-world barbaric in nature. Good luck and God bless; I’ll definitely be praying for you people.

August 25, 2011 at 9:06 a.m.
twharr said...

amnestiUSAF84, well said my fellow intelligent citizen. We are a dying breed here in the south. I find it so odd how these wingnuts are so easily manipulated. I really think if Limbaugh, the wingnuts God, would say there are vampires and wolves living amongst us along with Care Bears and Smurfs they'd believe it. It's either deep seeded hatred or just pure stupidity. Either or there's nothing that we can do or say to get them to see the light. The scary part is that these same people are running for local offices, congress, the senate and presidency. Bush wasn’t even as radical as these people are. When you have Karl Rove saying that people within his own party are nuts and aren’t electable that, to me, says it all.

August 25, 2011 at 9:20 a.m.
joneses said...

Creating jobs with stimulus money? You are insaane! Hussien had the House and the Senate for two years, spent 6 trillion dollars of which 1 trillion was stimulus and he has not created one job. As a matter of fact, a word you probably do not understand, the unemployment rate has risen since he has been in office. Maybe you need to stop watching CNN, Communist News Network, and start gather information like I from government websites and research institutions. You are apparently one of those fools that will follow this moron whatever he does. Another thing stupid. The Republicans are not in control. They only have had the House for about 7 months. You putting the economy that Hussien Obama has ruined on them shows how foolish you really are. You know what? I would bet you are one of the leaches in this country that has a government job and all you do is sit around on the internet pissing and moaning all day. Then you go home and tell you wife what a sorry life you have convincing yourself that your sorry life is the result of the people who choose to work a real job and be successful. Get a life as your pathetic life is not anyones fault but yours.

August 25, 2011 at 9:26 a.m.
joneses said...

twharr, I am done with this conversation as conversing with you is like dancing with an ugly woman, life is to short to mess with it. I want to get back to work so I can make money and create a job for someone. It is something Hussien Obama or you have never accomplished. So you just continue with your pathetic little life and all your pissing and moaning about how some of us chooce to be successful. Have a good day if you know how looser.

August 25, 2011 at 9:31 a.m.
chrisbrooks said...

http://chattaction.org/post/9348948901/guilty

The following charges and evidence were brought against Rep. Fleischmann:

First Charge: The Murder of American Jobs.

Evidence: Chucky Fleischmann voted for the Paul Ryan Plan, which would have killed millions of American jobs, including 9,621 infrastructure jobs and 58,291 health care jobs right here in Tennessee.

Second Charge: Falsely impersonating the working class.

Evidence: By busing tables and pumping gas in choreographed photo-opportunities, Chucky attempted to trick the public into ignoring how he routinely places the demands of corporations and the wealthy over the needs of the working class who make a living off those very jobs!

Third Charge: Criminal Neglect of his constituents.

Evidence: Chucky Fleischmann voted for and drafted ZERO job creation bills last session, though unemployment and underemployment are plaguing our families and communities.

Fourth Charge: Theft for taking the wealth of Tennessee’s working class and redistributing it upwards to the wealthiest 1% of annual income earners and multi-national corporations.

Evidence: Chucky Fleischmann voted for the Paul Ryan plan which would have given $2.9 TRILLION in tax-cuts for the rich and big corporations.

Fifth Charge: Criminal conspiracy for taking hostage the fate of millions of working families as an act of political theater.

Evidence: Chucky Fleischmann sided with right-wing extremists and voted against the debt-ceiling deal in an action that threatened nothing less than the collapse of the global economy.

Verdict: GUILTY! The people of Chattanooga found Rep. Chucky Fleischmann guilty on all charges.

August 25, 2011 at 11:31 a.m.
chrisbrooks said...

Our Demands: A petition certifying Rep. Fleischmann's guilt was signed by all parties to be given to Rep. Chucky Fleischmann at his office alongside a list of the following demands:

Dear Rep. Fleischmann,

We, the people of Chattanooga, would ask that you uphold the duties of your office by paying heed to the following demands:

Stop legislating with only the interests of big business and the wealthiest Americans in mind, and start passing laws on behalf of working families and the shrinking middle class, the impoverished, the millions who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own.

Do not allow the working families of Tennessee to shoulder the economic burden of crimes committed by Wall Street fatcats that ultimately drove the country to recession.

End tax loopholes for multi-national corporations, which are posting the highest recorded profits in the history of the world. Raise the marginal income rate on the wealthiest top three percent of Americans.

Bolster the U.S.’s social safety net and entitlement programs, which is the hallmark of an industrialized society. We should not be privatizing, in whole or part, our country’s most precious resources: our social services. Instead of targeting and slashing these programs, we need to be bolstering, expanding, and protecting services like Medicare, Social Security, Unemployment, and the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

Vote for real, sustainable, public jobs through healthcare and infrastructure.

The U.S. government does, can, and should provide jobs to the American people. We are all the government, and our collective wealth should serve public needs.

We need schools, universities, infrastructure, and universally accessible healthcare – all of which would support a strong and vibrant public sector in order to provide good jobs for our communities.

We need a revitalized Works Project Administration, which was instituted by the New Deal agency and employed millions of workers that carried out a number of public works projects that still benefit us today.

Stop using partisan excuses and political theater to hold hostage the economy of this country.

The debt-ceiling debate was a political charade and an economic travesty that terrified the American people; it was entirely self-inflicted by you and others in Congress. The S&P downgrade has trickled down into our communities and caused the downgrade of the Tennessee Valley Authority.

Stop pandering to far-right fringe groups and using pivotal national decisions to gain cheap points with your corporate financial base. This has put the credit rating of Chattanooga and Hamilton County at risk and if any of those entities get downgraded, capital projects like Red Bank Middle School and others will cost more money to build.

Pledge to never again put local, national, and global economies on the line in order to ensure that working families shoulder the entirety of the economic burden.

August 25, 2011 at 11:32 a.m.
twharr said...

Good job Chris! I respect how you are taking a stand for what is right.

August 25, 2011 at 11:45 a.m.
bjputtbrese said...

Republicans moralizing about "character assassination" is laughable—especially considering Rep. Chuck consistently denigrates President Barack Obama. It's like a schoolyard bully scolding his friends about manners. Good grief.

August 25, 2011 at 12:55 p.m.
ceeweed said...

We get what we vote for! Sheeple are not interested in the truth. There is enough blame to go around for the shape we are in. Honest men and women with morals and integrity have no interest in public office. Elections are bought. Campaigns are funded by special interest on both sides of our two-party system. Once elected, politicians are beholden, not to the people, but to the deep pockets that put them in office. They care very little for their constituents. As long as we, the people, have abdicated free-thought and prefer sound bites and talking points to studying the issues, we will continue to elect the likes of the amoral scum we have today... I, for one, am getting tired of having to hold my nose when I go to vote.

August 25, 2011 at 1:14 p.m.

I think Chcuk Fleischmann is doing an honest and consistent job. Things have to change. However, some programs aimed at children's benefits need to be kept. I applaud Congressman Fleischmann for breaking with the right on the WIC issue and standing up for kids. As a lifetime Democrat I find Chuck to be a lot more honest and accountable than Zach's spin and duck tactics of the past 16 years.

August 25, 2011 at 5:01 p.m.

Mr. Chris Brooks,

How do you earn the money you use to pay for food, clothing and shelter?

Curiously Yours,

MVB

August 25, 2011 at 5:14 p.m.
joneses said...

PRES OBAMA INHERITED: a AAA credit rating; $1.61 gas (as of 12/31/08); 5.4% unemployment; and an $8 trillion debt (accumulated since 1776, that was called “devastating”). 2 1/2 years later, we have an AA credit rating, nearly tripled gas prices, 9-10% unemployment & the debt ceiling is $17 TRILLION. Some STILL say this is a good job. Really?

August 25, 2011 at 8:47 p.m.

Mr Brooks is part of the problem. We need people in Washington DC like the Congressman who will make the tough decisions and not be afraid of special interests.

August 26, 2011 at 10:28 a.m.
ejohnson017 said...

Congressman Fleischmann is doing what needs to be done. Something our previous Congressman was unwilling to do. Keep up the good work and make the cuts

August 26, 2011 at 10:41 a.m.
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