SHARON, Pa. (WKBN) – A group of Mercer County residents have been trying to meet with Congressman Mike Kelly in person for the past six years.
Six people finally received the opportunity on Thursday at Kelly’s Sharon district office, calling it a small step in the right direction — and the result of a lot of work.
“Hundreds and hundreds of letters,” said Diane Syphrit of Hermitage. “Days and days of standing out here asking for it. And phone call, after phone call, after phone call.”
Syphrit said it was the first time Kelly has met with them in person since 2011.
The meeting lasted around 30 minutes. Healthcare, tax reform, education and the President were topics of discussion — with Congressman Kelly holding his ground on all them.
“Though we had the half hour, he pretty much repeated everything we knew — where his votes were,” Syphrit said. “He asked for what our solutions were, but he really wasn’t interested in it.”
“And to be honest, I’m not that opposed to some of the things that Mr. Kelly supported,” said Michael T. Muha of Hermitage. “But unfortunately, he won’t talk to any of us and I think that really is a shame.”
The demonstrators showed up for the meeting, too.
Still, Congressman Kelly only took six people into the meeting with him, leaving many with their voices unheard.
“Very frustrating,” said Brian Skibo of Hermitage. “I’ve been trying since 2014 to meet with him.”
Those who met with Kelly were okay with WKBN filming the meeting. But Kelly’s office was not, citing their policy on video.
Kelly also denied talking with WKBN after the meeting — his press team saying he had to leave for another meeting.
As far as a larger scale town hall, Kelly told those he met with Thursday that he plans to keep those over the phone.