How to get answers from a congressman who ignores you

For more than 2 ½ years I have been calling and writing to the Washington office of Congressman Mark Amodei almost every day asking for answers and getting none.

Beginning in the fall of 2019, I began using a system that at least produces answers to the yes-or-no questions.

Here’s what I do:

  1. Call the Washington office.
  2. Ask a question that the congressman has ignored for a week or more (often for a year or more).
  3. Tell the staffer that I am going to assume that the congressman’s answer is (I then say yes or no) UNLESS the staffer replies to the contrary.
  4. Announce to the staffer that they have five seconds to reply
  5. Count down from five to zero.
  6. Explain that I plan to make these answers public, and if the congressman wants to provide a different answer, he knows how to reach me.

So far, no staff member has opted to actually answer a question, and the congressman has not contacted me with any changes to these answers.

So here is what we have to date:

YES Congressman Amodei believes that President Trump should be permitted to lie to the public an infinite number of times without consequence.

NO Congressman Amodei will not introduce a resolution making it official, that President Trump is entitled to lie to the public an infinite number of times.

YES All of the disrespectful behavior toward Ed Cohen — the hundreds of hang-ups, the lying, the placing him on hold for hours at a time and then hanging up, the threatening to file a false police report accusing him of threatening to shoot an intern — all of that and more has been done at the direction of the congressman himself..

YES Members of the congressman’s staff refuse to read back any questions and comments that they have supposedly taken down from Ed Cohen because they don’t actually take them down, even though they say they do.

YES Congressman Amodei considers President Trump to be above the law.

YES Congressman Amodei believes that the Washington Post Fact Checker’s count of the president’s false and misleading statements – which now exceeds 15,000 – is basically accurate.

NO Congressman Amodei will not write to President Trump asking him for any evidence the president has to support his March 2017 tweet that President Obama illegally tapped the phone in Trump’s office in Trump Tower before the 2016 presidential election. And, no, Congressman Amodei will not write to President Trump asking for the source of his information.

YES Congressman Amodei agrees with President Trump’s oft-stated contention that he, Trump, won the popular vote for president in 2016. And the only reason the official tally showed otherwise (Clinton winning by nearly 3 million votes) is because of rampant voter fraud.

YES Congressman Amodei agrees with the president that “very fine people” participated in or simply attended the deadly Unite the Right Rally in Charlottesville, VA, in 2017, during which participants marched across the University of Virginia campus chanting “Jews will not replace us,” and a white nationalist killed a counter-protester with his car.

YES Congressman Amodei has directed his State Director Stacy Parobek in Reno to never agree to a face-to-face meeting with Ed Cohen and, furthermore, to never even respond to the question of whether she will ever consent to a meeting.

YES Congressman Amodei believes, as President Trump has stated many times, that Mexico will pay for a wall on the U.S.-Mexican border. This even though the president has ordered the transfer of U.S. tax dollars to pay for part of it, and the Mexican government has said repeatedly that it will not pay anything to build the wall. And it hasn’t.

NO Congressman Amodei will not write a letter to President Trump asking why the president did not simply fire Attorney General Jeff Sessions rather than insulting and humiliating him for a year because the attorney general recused himself from the Mueller investigation.

YES Congressman Amodei agrees with President Trump that Attorney General Sessions should have stopped the Mueller investigation before it began instead of recusing himself and letting the investigation go forward.

YES Mark Amodei agrees with a comment that President Trump reportedly made, that we don’t need any more immigrants from “shithole (predominantly non-white) countries.”

NO Congressman Amodei will not introduce a resolution of censure condemning President Trump for admitting in a court filing to gross misconduct in the management of his charity – including spending people’s donations on an oil painting of himself and using the charity’s funds to support his own presidential campaign – and then denying any wrongdoing by the charity the very next time he met with the press.

YES Congressman Amodei agrees with President Trump and Sen. Rand Paul and other Republicans that the whistleblower in the Ukraine scandal, whose identity some believe to be protected by statute, should nevertheless be unmasked.

NO Congressman Amodei does not dispute Reno Gazette-Journal columnist Ed Lyngar’s account of his call with Congressman Amodei, in which the congressman said Ed Cohen threatened to go to the home of one of his interns and shoot her.

YES The congressman believes it is appropriate for a congressman or a staff member to knowingly file a police report that falsely accuses a constituent of threatening to shoot someone.