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Charles Meredith: Congressman’s fate tied to vote

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Dear Friends,

Good morning. Before we visit the near drowning of our friend in his cistern 50 years ago, I have a recommendation for our Congressman Brian Fitzpatrick. Having seen the Bucks County row offices results a few weeks ago, BF must know that President Trump is toxic for any Republican … especially those living in suburban locals. Many of us think that BF is doomed unless he votes to impeach the president.

One of Mighty Betsy’s and my “keepers” believes that the congressman should issue a questionnaire for everyone in his district to opine whether he or she believes that President Trump should be impeached? Ditto for one third of the 100 U.S. senators who face retention next year. (Neither Senators Pat Toomey nor Bob Casey will be on the ballot.)

Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi is expected to call for a vote for President Trump’s impeachment and removal from office before Christmas. All 435 members will have no place to hide. The world will know how they voted.

My bet is that most of BF’s constituents want President Trump to leave office ASAP. We’ll see. Stay tuned.

In other news, Gov. Tom Wolf is expected to sign sex abuse bills into law. “Pennsylvania is the state where a grand jury’s groundbreaking report set off a new wave of reckoning over sexual abuse in the Roman Catholic Church,” the Associated Press reported (Nov. 22). “The state passed legislation giving victims more time to sue and police more time to file charges.

“Authorities would have up to 20 years to file charges in sex abuse cases where young adults (18- 23 years old) are the victims, as opposed to 12 years after the crime for victims over age 17 in current law.

“For lawsuits, victims would have until they turn 55 to sue, as opposed to age 30 under current law, and young adults ages 18-23 would have until age 30 to sue whereas existing law gives them only two years.

“Governmental institutions, such as public schools, would lose immunity from lawsuits for child sex abuse if the person suing was harmed by the negligence of the institution.” That’s good news.

And now for a tale from Mighty Betsy’s and my younger days. In the 1960s, we often dined at the homes of Carol and Diane Lippincott or David and Sue Keller in Buckingham Township. Diane and Sue were bridesmaids at our wedding. Years later they became part of our Grumbles organization where we have lunch at a nearby watering hole and discuss politics, religion and other topics that are normally off-limits in polite society.

One evening, decades ago, we were dining at the Lippincotts’ home. For some unknown reason, we decided to open the trap door under the dining room table and throw the silverware into the cistern, which lay right below. The cistern was about 10 feet deep and full of icy water. Carol decided to retrieve the silverware and jumped into the cistern.

That also was a bad decision. The evening was full of bad decisions. Fortunately one of us found a rope and we rescued poor Carol. So the story had a happy, though chilly, ending.

As many of you know, my friend Larry Grim (the Perkasie lawyer) and I are writing a book together. “Across the Street” will chronicle the lives of the Grim and Meredith families from the late 1800s to the present. For years, the Grims and Merediths lived in Perkasie, across Sixth Street from each other …raising families and telling tall tales, hence the title. Stay tuned.

Sincerely, Charles Meredith

By the way, here are a few dates to reserve for the holidays: The Kringle Christmas Shoppe in Applebachsvile (at the Haycock Township Community Center, 1014 Old Bethlehem Rd.) will be open 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 6, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 7, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday Dec., 8 from 10 to 4 p.m. It’s an annual event where you’ll find Latvian Americans in abundance, wearing native costumes. 45 juried local artisans will have plenty to spark your interest.

Also, the annual musical program “Christmas in Quakertown” will be presented at First Church UCC at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 7.

“Sing Christmas” at St. John’s UCC in Richlandtown features Larry Benner’s choir 7:30 p.m. Dec. 11 and 3 and 7:30 p.m. Dec. 8.


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