Rep. Rod Blum abruptly ended an interview Monday with a local Iowa TV station, apparently unhappy with a line of questioning about who would be allowed into the series of town hall events he is holding this week in his district.
Prior to airing the abbreviated interview, KCRG-TV’s anchors explained that the station’s interview with Blum had been in the works for weeks and that the children surrounding the congressman during the interview were there at his request.
The conversation between Blum and reporter Josh Scheinblum appeared somewhat tense from the moment it began as the legislator defended his decision to check the IDs of those attending his scheduled town hall meeting and only allow in those who were from his district. “We don’t need people from Chicago there or Des Moines there or Minneapolis there. I don’t represent them. They should go talk to their representatives at their town hall meetings.”
On a follow up question, Blum again insisted that “I don’t represent all Iowans. I represent the first district of Iowa. That would be like saying ‘shouldn’t I be able to, even though I live in Dubuque, go vote in Iowa City during the election because I’d like to vote in that district instead?’”
Scheinblum replied by asking Blum if he would still be willing to accept a donation from a Republican in Iowa City, a question that prompted the congressman to scoff and announce “I’m done” as he stood up to remove his microphone. “This is ridiculous. He’s going to sit here and just badger me,” Blum said, seemingly gesturing to a staff member of his off camera.
The children Blum had insisted on using as a backdrop for the interview filed out with him as he left. The entire interview lasted just longer than two minutes.