Much-ballyhooed and sold out within hours of announcement, the All North County Congressional Town Hall scheduled for March 19 at MiraCosta College Concert Hall, Oceanside was cancelled abruptly Friday afternoon.
Rep. Duncan Hunter, (R-50th Congressional District) and Rep. Mike Levin (D-49th Congressional District) were scheduled to attend the 2-hour evening event primarily arranged by the San Diego North Economic Development Council. Additional sponsors included the Carlsbad, Escondido, Oceanside, San Marcos and Vista chambers of commerce.
First word came from Levin’s office early Friday. His communications director, Eric Mee, sent an email to The Grapevine, saying “I am trying to get in touch with (the editor) regarding his story headlined ‘Rep. Duncan Hunter tries to remain relevant.’”
That story discussed the upcoming town hall as possibly Hunter’s only public exposure to a non-partisan audience since a disastrous Ramona town hall in March, 2017; and his federal indictment on 60 counts of campaign finance fraud for spending over $250,000 of campaign funds on personal expenses.
In response to questions, Mee later emailed: “Due to a scheduling conflict, Rep. Levin will not be at the North San Diego County chambers of commerce town hall. If you would be able to update the article to reflect that, that would be much appreciated.”
Cancellation was confirmed by Erik Bruvold, San Diego North Economic Development Council CEO. “There was a conflict on the representatives’ calendar,” he said. “They didn’t share what the conflict was.”
Both Hunter’s and Levin’s offices contacted the chamber to beg off the event, according to Bruvold, who said the chamber would try to re-schedule the event for another time. Citing it being late Friday afternoon, Bruvold declined to answer further questions. Hunter’s office could not be reached for comment.
For the record, late Friday, the All North County Congressional Townhall Eventbrite page listing “sold out” tickets to the event, posted:
Subject: Townhall postponed
Due to changes in the Congressional calendar and schedules of our representatives, we have to postpone the All North County Congressional Townhall scheduled for March 19th to a later date. We hope to have information later in the year as to a date and location that will work. As registrants we will commit to you to get you information as soon as we are able to reschedule.
We apologize for any inconvenience and thank you for your interest in the program.
This is how the original announcement went:
“Join us for the first ever All North County Congressional Townhall. Sponsored by 5 North County Chambers, the San Diego North EDC, and Hosted by MiraCosta College, this is a great opportunity hear from our congressional delegation, ask them questions about how activities in D.C. will impact our community and meet other North County leaders interested in improving our region.
Congressman Mike Levin – CA 49th – Confirmed
Congressman Duncan Hunter – CA 50th – Invited.”
Sounded good. Not gonna happen. Sorry.