Virginia GOP Congressman Refuses to Speak Where Event Is “Open To The Public”

h/t to Think Progress for this up to date email on Eric Cantor’s refusal to meet the public …

In just a few moments, we were expecting to hear a speech by House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) about inequality in America. We were particularly intrigued to hear the speech because Cantor has previously characterized the Occupy Wall Street movement as a “mob” that wants to “divide America.”

But, shortly after noon today, Cantor abruptly canceled his speech at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business. His office complained that the University was making his speech open to the public, but Cantor only wanted to speak to a “selected audience.” (Cantor’s decision followed plans for a large march and protest prior to the speech.)

You can read the full text of the speech that Cantor did not deliver HERE.

Cantor had claimed that the University of Pennsylvania changed its attendance policy at the last moment, thus forcing him to withdraw. But in a statement released moments ago, the University explained that the speech was always open to the public. “The Wharton speaker series is typically open to the general public, and that is how the event with Majority Leader Cantor was billed,” a statement read.

Speaking of income inequality, we wanted to share a few important facts with you. Since the late ‘60s, the middle class share of income has fallen in tandem with the decline rate of union membership in America. Meanwhile, the top 1 percent has experienced a precipitous rise. Check out this chart:

If Cantor were truly interested in reducing income inequality, here are five proposals we offered that he could embrace:

1. Promote Unionization
2. Rein in CEO Pay
3. Fair, Progressive Tax Reform
4. Increase the Capital Gains Tax Rate
5. Promote Economic Mobility Through Education

Thanks,

Faiz

Faiz Shakir
Editor, ThinkProgress.org

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