Dan Helmer, Virginia Delegate to the 40th District

Virginia Delegate Dan Helmer Refuses to Answer Questions At Fairfax VA Town Hall, Flees

Helmer Heads Out

Chantilly, VA. December 17th, 2019

Virginia’s 40th District Delegate Dan Helmer made a hasty exit from the Sully Government Center on Tuesday night after refusing to allow members of the public to question him on newly proposed anti-gun legislation.

After sitting through an extended discussion about climate change, members of the crowd grew restless and began to call out for a chance to speak about new gun laws. Helmer – sharing the stage with Virginia Senator David Marsden and Delegate Karrie Delaney – conspicuously fled the scene after being called out directly, leaving his colleagues to make an awkward exit as the crowd’s excitement escalated.

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Anticipating the opportunity to speak publicly with their elected officials, the event, advertised by the Brady Campaign as a Town Hall meeting, drew a substantial number of people from the community. Unfortunately for organizers, most of the citizens in attendance were pro-gun.

The newly proposed gun laws include red flag confiscations, a ban on private sales, and California-style bans on certain weapons and features. The pending legislation has caused massive controversy in Virginia, with a large majority of counties adopting “2A Sanctuary” policies. These counties are generally pledging not to enforce state gun-control laws.

The Town Hall That Wasn’t

The Brady Campaign to End Gun Violence advertised the registration for this event as a "Town Hall", however officials did not allow time for discussion with the public who attended.
The Brady Campaign to End Gun Violence advertised this event as a “Town Hall”, however officials did not allow time for discussion with the public who attended.

The officials touched briefly on gun control in a closed discussion, and then awkwardly attempted to avoid the topic again by speaking for a considerable length of time about climate change, solar power, electric cars, and the importance of youth in politics.

The crowd, primarily composed of gun-rights activists, was clearly growing impatient with the lack of relevant discourse as the meeting progressed over the course of about an hour.

Towards the end, Daniel Helmer chose to ignore a direct question from someone in the crowd asking for a chance to speak on the matter of gun rights.

As it became clear that the crowd was growing impatient, officials ended the ‘Town Hall’ without opening the floor to public Q&A.

The crowd grew angry and began to demand to be heard. Helmer — who’d made an earlier spectacle of his time overseas in the Army as an officer — responded by stating that people had already voted and fled the area, leaving his fellow officials to make an awkward exit shortly after.

You frequently hear of politicians running FOR office, but not many run AWAY from the office.

We can only hope the trend catches on.

Note: En Bloc sent 3 messages to Dan Helmer’s Instagram account — which is active — asking for a statement about his actions. These messages were ignored, and he has logged in since to post more pictures.

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Lee Enfield
Lee writes about 3D printing, guns, politics, and opinion. E-mail at [email protected] and on Twitter @enbloc_lee.