Bentivolio Refuses to Face Voters

Commerce, MI—The Dave Trott for Congress campaign today reminded voters in Michigan’s 11th Congressional District of the  lack of public appearances by their Congressman, Kerry Bentivolio. For the last two years, public appearances have been few and far between by Congressman Bentivolio in an effort to keep his congressional seat.

“Kerry Bentivolio refuses to hold town hall meetings and to debate in person,” said Megan Piwowar, Trott Campaign Manager. “Bentivolio’s stealth campaign is an insult to 11th District voters and hurts local governments and constituents who would like to be able to have direct contact with their Congressman. This is one of the reasons Dave Trott has lined up almost every elected official in the Congressional District.”

Dating back to August 2012, Bentivolio has been criticized for hiding from voters when the Detroit Free Press noted, “It’s especially troubling that Bentivolio is running such a stealth campaign in the 11th.” Over the past two years, Bentivolio has not held town halls where constituents are invited, has not agreed to in-person debates offered by the 11th District Republican Committee or the League of Women Voters, and does not have regularly scheduled appearances where voters can find out where he stands.

“It is no wonder voters are so dissatisfied with Congressman Bentivolio,” stated Megan Piwowar.  “He uses trickery and gimmicks to try to mask his unwillingness to communicate with the voters. Bentivolio’s hide-and-seek game for more than two years is unacceptable, and voters are frustrated with his unwillingness to listen to them.”



“Five of the candidates for the 11th congressional district showed up in Plymouth Monday night for standing room only forum sponsored by the League of Women Voters. But the candidate who pundits are predicting will be the likely winner in the largely Republican district – Kerry Bentivolio, a Milford Republican, former teacher and reindeer rancher – was a no show.” (Kerry Bentivolio doesn’t attend League of Women Voters forum in Plymouth, Detroit Free Press, Oct. 1, 2012)

“He and his campaign managers have given various reasons for declining interviews: prayer meetings, other commitments, a wasp sting to his foot that his staff said kept him home the Sunday before the August primary. He skipped a League of Women Voters forum in Plymouth last week, the only one of six invited candidates not to attend.” (Running his campaign on silence: Kerry Bentivolio is front-runner but also a mystery who dodges events, news media, Detroit Free Press,  October 14, 2012)

“On primary night, a Free Press reporter tried to talk to him after his victory speech, but a campaign operative stepped in and announced no interviews. When a second Free Press reporter tried to interview Bentivolio at the Michigan Republican Party’s state convention in September, he relented for a few minutes before a campaign aide abruptly ended the exchange. And when a third Free Press reporter tried to talk to Bentivolio last month at a meet-the-candidates event in Waterford, he said, “I’m not going to talk to you. You’re not our friend. You’re working for the Democratic Party.” (Running his campaign on silence: Kerry Bentivolio is front-runner but also a mystery who dodges events, news media, Detroit Free Press,  October 14, 2012)

“Bentivolio, 61, is running a low-key campaign and at times has been hard to find as opponents dig up questionable details about his past and portray him as an unstable extremist.” (Michigan House race muddled after bizarre start, Associated Press, October 29, 2012)