Thanking Pappy's for helping him stay within his $65.00 budget Oakes started his forum with "Brass Bonanza" the Whalers standard. He jokingly assured the crowd he had written permission to use it from the composer Jacques Ysaye, who he said currently lives in Belgium and just celebrated his 90th birthday. Matthew encouraged everyone to eat and ask questions. He also indicated that voter registration forms were available.
Matthew opened the program by telling the story of Washington crossing the Delaware and his soldiers having no boots. "They left trails of blood in the snow to fight for the freedom that we are losing now." He discussed his qualifications, "I am qualified because the U.S. Constitution says I am. I am qualified because I am disabled, I am on Social Security, I am on Medicare, I am discriminated against. I live what the other candidates pay lip service to." He also discussed Chris Murphy voting with the Republicans to repeal the CLASS Act. "The people of Connecticut wanted it fixed, not repealed. Another example of Chris Murphy ignoring the residents of Connecticut. He does not care about the elderly, no, he does not care about the citizens of Connecticut as a whole." Oakes feels healthcare companies have Chris Murphy in their pockets.
Carolyn Arabolos of Coventry, Connecticut said she came because of the interview with Oakes in the Hartford Courant. She asked several hard hitting questions. At one point Arabolos asked Oakes his views on the 2008 "bail-out" and stated she read it was necessary. Matthew replied that Chris Murphy voted in favor of it even though the majority of Connecticut residents were against it. "The bailout was rushed through based on fear." Later Matthew stated that he felt the crisis could have also been averted if money had been invested in the middle class instead of the big banks.
Hartford resident Lois Petrolito said she felt compelled to come because she was laid off after 39 years of work. "My husband is going to be laid off. The numbers say there were jobs created but we are both going to be unemployed."
After being quizzed on immigration, gay marriage and several other topics Matthew closed the "rally" stating that he deserved a chance. "All Americans deserve to be heard. Susan, William and Chris are all arrogant. They think people like us, the average person should not be allowed to participate. I disagree. Since I cannot participate in debates or forums we will continue to travel Connecticut talking to people. Torrington next week!" Matthew lastly poked fun at Dennis House of WFSB for messaging him to contact him then when Oakes did House ignored him. With a grin Matt said, "He had me scratching my dang head."
More information about his experience and campaign platform is available at www.matthewoakes2012.com he can be followed on Twitter at @MattOakes4Senate. Please contact Connecticut for Matthew Oakes at firstname.lastname@example.org