From Toledo to Youngstown the past 48 hours there's been plenty of celebrity gawking as President Obama opened a bus tour across Ohio into Pennsylvania, followed in tow by GOP Governors Tim Pawlenty and Bobby Jindal on another bus. One law enforcement official, however, would appreciate someone calling him so he can send a message, too.
Brimfield Police Chief David Oliver has a regular feature on the Brimfield Police Department's Facebook page called "Chief's Babble"; he usually offers commentary on local issues, but today's posting asks a question of the President: can't you come through on a quiet Sunday instead of a busy rush hour when people are trying to get to work?
The "Chief's Babble" notes it may contain sarcasm, for those unfamiliar with Oliver's conversational and breezy style of writing which frequently uses irony and sarcasm in it's observations relating to his issues of the day. Today's posting reflected just some of the comments and calls we recieved at AkronNewsNow from drivers frustrated with delays that usually accompany a Presidential motorcade.
President Obama's bus tour started in the Toledo area before making it's way through Sandusky, Cleveland's western suburbs and a rally in Parma Thursday evening before stopping for an overnight stay at the Doubletree Hotel in Fairlawn.
His morning opened with a round of traffic headaches for Akron-area motorists on West Market, Miller Road and Interstate 77 that also included a breakfast stop at Ann's Place on South Hawkins Ave. (seen, left, courtesy pool photo/Associated Press) before heading east to campaign appearances in the Youngstown area. The bus tour hits Pittsburgh Friday afternoon.
Related story: Ann's Place Owner Dies After Meeting Obama
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(Text of Chief Oliver's post on Facebook)
Chief’s Babble….On a Presidential Drive-by….
***Warning- may contain sarcasm****
Dear Mr. President,
I am the Chief of Police in Brimfield, Ohio. I have sent you a couple letters in the past, one of which requested stimulus funding for our new police department. I know you are busy running the country (a job I would not want) and you cannot return every letter or call. Actually, no elected federal public servant returned a call to me. We were not awarded any funding, so we applied for a loan through the USDA. We are building the new department right now.
I respect the office of the President and love my country. I am also not good at keeping my mouth shut when the community is impacted. This morning you came through our community. You entered it shortly after leaving Akron, Ohio. We are a small police department of 13 officers- and we were all here today, shutting down on and off-ramps, and generally causing delays to the motoring public. While I respect campaigns and the desire to serve the public, I would like to offer that motoring down an interstate in a huge bus, with a caravan resembling a parade, may not be the best idea during rush hour. As a working man, I get somewhat stressed when I am late for work. I believe others do also. Our department had to shut down eight on and off ramps, secure bridges and make the ODOT workers stop doing ODOT work as you made your way through. We could not tell anyone why they were being delayed, which does not help with the public perception on police officers in general.
I respect that you are the “most powerful man on the planet” and to be fair, if Mitt Romney did this, he would get the same advice. I am pretty confident you understand how everything comes to a standstill when you enter a community. Additionally, from a fiscal standpoint, my officers were here in an overtime capacity this morning, which is at the expense of the taxpayers- who are now late for work.
If you decide to come this way again, my suggestion is to do so on a quiet Sunday either before church traffic or in between church traffic and lunch. Sundays are usually a little more manageable for the motoring public. You are also welcome to stop and see the construction progress, as is Mr. Romney. We would be excellent hosts.
Best of luck in your endeavors…...Chief.