Metro Inconveniences Texans, Inhibits Free Speech

Congressman demands to know why Metro was crowded for Tea Party

By Matthew Stabley
|  Thursday, Sep 17, 2009  |  Updated 12:49 PM EDT
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Metro Inconveniences Texans, Inhibits Free Speech

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Metro made it difficult to take the train to the march.

WASHINGTON -- Finally, Texas is weighing in on Metro's summer of poor service.

Sure, the multiple fatal June 22 crash was tragic, the Labor Day weekend closures were ill-timed, and the manual operation all summer long has been inconvenient, but the last straw for U.S. Rep. Kevin Brady was Saturday's taxpayer commute, um, march.

"Based upon numerous eye-witness reports by participants in the march, it is clear METRO did not adequately prepare for the influx of Americans traveling to D.C. for this historic event," Brady wrote to Metro General Manager John Catoe. "I want an explanation why."

Writing on behalf of his constituents, the Texas Republican cited elderly veterans in wheelchairs unable to use the subway because it was busy and an 80-year-old woman and her 60-year-old daughter who had to pay for a taxi in order to avoid close contact with Metro customers.

Clearly a regular rider, Brady seems bewildered, in his letter, as to how Metro could allow such crowded conditions despite plenty of warning. We've often wondered why the trains are so packed at rush hour. Metro knows that's coming twice every weekday!

By not planning for a crowd of 60,000 to 2 million, depending on who's counting, Metro interfered with southeast Texans' right to Tea Party.

Had anyone in Texas cared about President Barack Obama's inauguration, the transit agency's problems could have been addressed sooner. Here's hoping Brady's constituents avoid the Beltway near Tysons Corner over the weekend and spare the congressman's staff more great dictations.

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