One of the greatest privileges of serving in Congress is getting to meet so many amazing constituents remarkably interested in engaging in productive, substantive exchanges of ideas in order to improve the direction of our island, state and nation.
I would like to thank everyone who came out to my three recent town halls in Riverhead, Farmingville and Smithtown, as well as mobile office hours in Peconic. These events were important opportunities to meet with many NY-1 constituents and answer their questions. It was an honor to see so many great people from our district not only take time out of their busy Sunday to attend the forums, but also come to these events ready and prepared with inquiries on the issues they were most passionate about. Whether it was specific concerns regarding veterans’ care at the Northport VA or the importance of Department of Energy funding to carry out important science missions in our district, so many attended with a commitment to engage in productive, substantive dialogue.
In addition to these recent events, I have also participated in many other great outreach efforts in 2017, including a Facebook Live session, a telephone town hall and mobile office hours at the Hagerman Fire Department in East Patchogue. My days have been filled with so many other excellent one on one and small group meetings with constituents — and these are only the beginning of the events we have planned for this year.
As your Congressman, one of my absolute top priorities is ensuring that your voice is heard in Washington. You have placed your trust in me to represent you in front of the nation and with that honor comes the responsibility of taking every single opinion into consideration. Before casting a vote, signing onto a bill, advocating for funding for a specific program, or whatever it may be, I always take into consideration the concerns that have been passed on to me to ensure that I can work in the absolute best interest of our district. I want to know your views on the critical topics we face as Americans because it is the best way to represent you.
I cannot promise that I am always going to see eye to eye with every constituent. Like every American, I possess my own personal views on what I think are the best ways to advance our community, state and nation. No single person within our district is going to always agree with me on every single issue and it should never be that way. One of the truly amazing things about our nation is not only that we are granted the freedom to dissent, but the fact that healthy, productive, substantive debate is encouraged. What I can promise is that I will never stop working to best serve this district and that I am willing to work with absolutely anyone from across the ideological spectrum on any issue, whether it’s small and local or large scale.
At the end of the day, we are all members of NY-1, the greatest Congressional District in America, and our ultimate goal is to move our interests forward and tackle the shared obstacles we face. Democrat or Republican, liberal or conservative, there are so many areas where we can find common ground. While there may not always be an easy solution to these challenges, I truly believe that when we work as one, we’re unbeatable.
Top file photo: Congressman Lee Zeldin (R-Shirley) met with constituents April 23 at Suffolk County Community College’s Eastern Campus in Northampton. (Credit: Grant Parpan)