Skip to main content

In the days of Washington and Jefferson, Members of Congress had a difficult time reaching the people they represented. A horse and buggy ride from Washington, DC to most states in the union was quite the journey, and most Americans were lucky to have access to their Congressperson one month a year. From the railroad to the telegraph to commercial air travel to this blog, new technologies have made it easier for Members of Congress to reach the American people. On Tuesday, February 8th, at 9:15 PM EST/6:15 PM PST, I’m honored to continue in this tradition by becoming the first Member of Congress to host a live mobile video town hall – or as Josh Richman at the Oakland Tribune coined it, "Garamendi on the Go."

'Visible Vote' is a free application for Facebook, the web, and smartphones (Apple iPhone, Google Android, and Blackberry). It connects you to the lawmakers that represent you and the lawmakers you want to follow. With this American-made technology, you can view live mobile video hosted by Members of Congress on your smartphone and ask questions in real time. With Visible Vote, you can also participate in public policy by voting on past and pending legislation, accessing and comparing your votes to your legislators’ records, and submitting your preferences and messages directly to our offices here in Washington. Information on how to set up Visible Vote is available at their get started page.

As a Member of Congress, I want to use the best and latest technologies to engage the residents of my district. Visible Vote’s innovative and free video town hall software will enable thousands of people to reach me with the tap of a touchscreen. In 2010, I hosted 15 in person and 10 telephone town halls. I host many events in the district, but logistics and travel time keep many of my constituents from attending. Visible Vote makes it easier than ever to attend a town hall.

With Visible Vote, Members of Congress can visit the public instead of the other way around. The cliché that you can participate from the convenience of your own home is incomplete, however, since you can participate from the convenience of any location with cell phone reception. I’m looking forward to being the first Member of Congress to take advantage of this exciting new technology, and you’re all invited to join us Tuesday as we debut what may be the most critical innovation in the Congressional town hall since central air.

Originally posted to Congressman John Garamendi on Mon Feb 07, 2011 at 12:57 PM PST.

Also republished by Emerging Technology and Activism.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site