Town Hall Talk: The Latest Banter on Health Care
Here's a flavor of the latest bites taken at congressmen for their positions on health-care reform and a rundown of upcoming town hall meetings to monitor:
St. Louis County, Mo.-- Six people were arrested at a town hall meeting held by Rep. Russ Carnahan at Bernard Middle School last night. Two arrests were due to "suspicion of assault, one of resisting arrest and three on suspicion of committing peace disturbances," wrote Leah Thorsen of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
The local Tea Party Coalition, a movement voicing opposition to President Obama's health-care reform plans, had reportedly urged members to attend. Although the meeting was pegged by Carnahan's team as "a forum on aging," protesters came armed with signs about the national health-care debate, said Thorsen.
The arrests followed Carnahan's exit. Thorsen wrote that Dawn Majors, also of The Post-Dispatch, "saw a police squad car turn its lights on and went to see what was happening. As she approached it, her eyes started to burn" from pepper spray used as arrests were made.
Thorsen said Majors identified one woman arrested as an audience member who "had been speaking very loudly and passionately in support of health-care reform earlier in the evening,"
Ybor City, Fla. -- "Hundreds of vocal critics" stormed a town hall meeting as Rep. Kathy Castor (D) delivered her health-care reform pitch, according to Adam Smith of the St. Petersburg Times. Smith said Castor's remarks were disrupted by "cat calls, jeering and shoving." One protester was arrested as dozens in the audience shouted, "tyranny, tyranny, tyranny!"
Smith reported other shouts at the event: "Tell the truth! Tell the truth!" "Read the bill!" "Forty-million illegals! Forty million illegals!"
Although the meeting, hosted by state Rep. Betty Reed (D-Tampa) and the SEIU, was intended to be "something of a pep rally" for President Obama's health-care reform plan, Smith said it reminded him more of a "wrestling cage match."
Today's Town Hall Meetings
Howards Grove and Manitowoc, Wisc. - Rep.Thomas Petri (R-Wisc.) holds town halls meetings at 10:00 a.m. and 2:30 p.m., respectively.
Denton and Gainesville, Tex. -- Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Tex.) holds town hall meetings at 10:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., respectively.
Moorseville, N.C. -- Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-N.C.) hosts a town hall meeting at Moorsesville Town Hall at 6:00 p.m.
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