Rep. Chabot to hold second town hall; will allow cameras

Rep. Steve Chabot (R-Ohio), whose town-hall meeting last week drew criticism when police officers seized cameras from constituents in the crowd, will host another meeting Monday night — this time with cameras allowed.

The Cincinnati congressmans office announced that recording devices would be permitted throughout the meeting, but that Chabot would stick around after the event to answer the questions of those who did not wish to be taped.

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Chabots office said the cameras were confiscated at last weeks meeting to protect the privacy of constituents. Chabot spokesman Jamie Schwartz told The Huffington Post that there were multiple instances where constituents voiced their concern about being videotaped when asking a question that revealed private information.

The move was widely denounced by both progressives and Tea Party activists, who argued that Chabots policy represented a lack of transparency.

At Monday’s meeting, Chabot will also answer questions directly from the audience, rather than having them pre-screened, as has been his policy at prior events. The congressman traditionally requires attendees at such events to sign in and submit their questions in writing beforehand.

We will be modifying our policy to allow individual citizens to bring cameras to our town-hall events, and will be instructing those in attendance that if they have a private question for the congressman that he will be available to meet with them after the meeting concludes, Schwartz said.

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