STOCKTON — Several local political leaders are scheduled to participate Sunday afternoon at an NAACP town hall meeting in north Stockton. Bobby Bivens, who heads the Stockton branch of the NAACP, said topics will include the federal budget, tax reform and education reform.
The event, co-hosted by the NAACP and Black Women for Political Action, is scheduled for 2-4 p.m. at Greater Christ Temple, 8800 Thornton Road.
Bivens said Assemblywoman Susan Eggman, D-Stockton, Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-Stockton, and Mayor Michael Tubbs all have confirmed they will attend.
A flyer for the event also lists Rep. Jeff Denham, R-Turlock, as an “invited guest.” Denham’s office confirmed Friday that he will not be present.
“We notified them several weeks ago that the Congressman will be in D.C. with the House being in session the next day,” spokeswoman Jessica McFaul said. “I’m not sure where the disconnect was.”
McNerney’s office, on the other hand, confirmed that he will be present at the Stockton event even though the House will be in session the next day.
Denham’s congressional district stretches into Manteca, Ripon, Tracy and Escalon in the southern part of San Joaquin County but does not reach into Stockton.
Still, Bivens said that because Denham represents a portion of the county, he should have made time for Sunday’s town hall.
“His folks seem to be not wanting to have him there,” Bivens said. “For over a month we have been trying to get his participation. … His staff may not want him to participate so they don’t get the negative press.”
Denham participated in a 2½-hour town hall near Turlock two weeks ago. According to a report in the Modesto Bee, about 1,000 supporters and critics attended the event, during which Denham often was interrupted by boos and shouts from the crowd.
McFaul said with Congress in session most of May and June, there are “no plans currently” for him to have an appearance in San Joaquin County anytime soon.
“When we do things we try not to be disrespectful and uncourteous to our guests,” Bivens said. “But certainly, his constituents in the county need to hear from him.”
— Contact reporter Roger Phillips at (209) 546-8299 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him at recordnet.com/phillipsblog and on Twitter @rphillipsblog.