Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) is raising questions about the surprise cancellation of a town hall meeting in West Virginia, which was scheduled for Monday morning and was to be filmed for an MSNBC special. In a statement, Sanders said that a National Guard armory that had been booked for the town hall had canceled without explanation, and that the network was unable to find a new venue on short notice.
“If anyone in West Virginia government thinks that I will be intimidated from going to McDowell County, West Virginia, to hold a town meeting, they are dead wrong,” Sanders said in a statement. “If they don’t allow us to use the local armory, we’ll find another building. If we can’t find another building, we’ll hold the meeting out in the streets. That town meeting will be held. Poverty in America will be discussed. Solutions will be found.”
On Friday night, as first reported by the Charleston Gazette-Mail, MSNBC and Sanders learned that the armory would not be available for the town hall, which was to be moderated by host Chris Hayes. While the state National Guard and new Gov. Jim Justice (D-W.Va.) have not talked about the cancellation, people with knowledge of the event say it had been planned for weeks, and they were told belatedly that the venue could not host a political event.