Protesters say McConnell avoiding phone calls from opponents of - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Protesters say McConnell avoiding phone calls from opponents of Trump immigration orders

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- More protesters took to the streets of downtown Louisville on Tuesday against President Donald Trump's immigration order, but this time they had a specific message for Kentucky's senior U.S. Senator.

The protesters in front of the federal building claimed Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is intentionally avoiding hearing from constituents who oppose the president's actions. They jammed the sidewalk chanting slogans protesting President Trump’s new immigration restrictions,and the proposed wall on the Mexican border.

But their big beef is with McConnell.

The demonstrators say the senator is blocking their attempts to call his office to complain about the president's orders.

“He has shut down his Washington, D.C., phone number for a long time," said Rev. Dawn Cooley, who organized the protest. "The voicemail was full. And so people would try and call from even around the country, and they would get that the voice mailbox was full."

Calls to McConnell's Washington, D.C., office were met with a voicemail message, which said in part, “If you are calling between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. Eastern Standard Time, we are currently experiencing a high volume of calls.”

McConnell Press Secretary Robert Steurer released a statement in response to the protest.

“Senator McConnell’s staff answers as many calls as possible in the course of a workday, but thanks to a coordinated effort by liberal activists across the country many Kentuckians have found it difficult in recent weeks to get through to their senator to discuss the issues of the day, schedule meetings, or seek timely assistance. We appreciate the patience of our constituents, and will continue to do our very best to respond to every Kentuckian who contacts our office.”

The statement goes on to invite constituents to contact the Senator online. McConnell has commented on Trump's order.

In an interview with ABC News on Sunday, he warned against a religious test for immigrants.

“To the extent that they're trying to improve the vetting process, I think that's in order," McConnell said. "We need to bear in mind that we don't have religious tests in this country, and we also need to remember that some of our best allies in the world against Islamic terrorism are Muslims."

But those protesting outside McConnell's Louisville office say he needs to communicate directly to his constituents back home.

"He needs to answer his phone," Cooley said. "He needs to make appointments with constituents. He needs to have town halls."

The protesters say they plan to be here every Tuesday for, as they put it, as long as it takes.

Related Stories:

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'Rally for American Values' brings thousands to downtown Louisville

Louisville woman from Somalia worries about her family's safety amid President Trump's immigration ban

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