Rep. Newhouse responds to yesterday's rally - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Rep. Newhouse responds to yesterday's rally

Posted: Updated:

02/23/17 UPDATE:

YAKIMA, WA - Congressman Dan Newhouse spent today in Yakima, just a day after a crowd of protesters stood outside his office. Reporter Veronica Padilla had a chance to ask the congressman about the rally right before he went on a ride-along with the Yakima County Sheriff's Office.

Yesterday, protesters marched through downtown Yakima demanding to know where the congressman stands on issues like immigrant rights and health care. The congressman was actually in Olympia meeting with state lawmakers about the impact federal legislation could have on Washington, but he told Veronica Padilla earlier today that he absolutely wants to get feedback from the people he represents.

Rep. Newhouse says he knows there's a lot of questions people have for him, especially with the policies that are coming from the Trump Administration.

"You know, I've always been as open as I possibly can be about what my thought process is as I make decisions on the people I represent on their behalf," said Rep. Newhouse. "I definitely want to hear from my constituents. We're holding several things in the near future. I'm going to have a couple telephone townhalls next week, so people can participate that way. We're also looking at having some public listening sessions as well."

If you want to have your voice heard, next week will be the perfect opportunity. You can sign up for telephone townhall meetings on the congressman's website: newhouse.house.gov. His office says it's a great way to reach thousands of people, and Rep. Newhouse is one of the few people in congress who do not screen out questions or differing opinions.

Meanwhile, Congressman Newhouse got a unique look into the Yakima County Sheriff's Department today. He was able to sit in a patrol car with two deputies...one of them with four legs.

But before he met a department K-9, Rep. Newhouse sat down with Sheriff Brian Winter and his chief civil deputy to talk about the state of the Sheriff's Office, including the complexity of jurisdiction on cases from the Yakama Indian Reservation and the use of force.

"Well there's nothing like firsthand experience to see what our law enforcement officers are having to deal with on a daily basis," said Rep. Newhouse. "The kind of tools that they need, anything that I can do from my ability to help them, I want to see firsthand. It's great to have that conversation, but to see them in the field, I think, is very important."

And this is not Rep. Newhouse's first ride-along with police. He was able to do one with a state patrol officer about ten years ago. He says that experience was really interesting and is looking forward to observing how well-trained Yakima County Sheriff's deputies are.

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YAKIMA, WA - Many people rallied and marched on the streets of Yakima this afternoon to get Congressman Dan Newhouse's attention. Reporter Gilbert Magallon was there to learn what the protesters hoped to achieve through this demonstration.

People gathered at the Yakima County Performance Park and marched together until they got to Newhouse's office, to have their voices heard. Their chants echoed through downtown Yakima as protesters demanded to know where Newhouse stands on issues like health care and immigrants' rights.

"I actually voted for Representative Newhouse," said protester Ed Pacheco, "and yet we have questions, and I have questions, and he does not make himself available to me or to the community, so we decided to come out and look for him, because he's not coming out to address us."

We Are Working Washington is a group that fights for equality, and organized the rally and march. The demonstration brought out people from different cultures and walks of life, like Ed Stover of Sunnyside.

"I would hope that he would listen and open his eyes and open his ears, and see that people are upset by this," said Stover.

When the crowd got to Newhouse's office, protesters demanded Newhouse come out and speak to them. But when he didn't come out, that's when a few went into his office asking for him. They were told that he was in Olympia meeting with state lawmakers, and that a representative from his office would be sent out.

The group says they will continue to gather and rally until Newhouse hears their voices and addresses their concerns.

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