Just five days following the House Republicans getting the votes to start the repeal-and-replace process for the Affordable Care Act, those elected officials who voted yes are returning to their domestic districts with constituents calling them liars, urging them to execute their jobs and suggesting that they even recede back to college.
With the House of Representatives in recess this week, House Republicans are beginning to see and hear the fallout firsthand from aroused constituents, many of whom are worried approximately the future of their health care, in heated town halls throughout the country.
Perhaps the most jarring example came Monday in Dubuque, Iowa, where Rep. Ron Blum was met with resounding resistance from a prescreened audience of nearly 1,000 people in a high school gym, struggling to define why he voted for the bill supporting the American Health Care Act. According to the Washington Post and KCRG, Blum, who walked out of a TV interview after refusing to expand on why his staff was prescreening audiences for the four town halls he’s holding this week in his district, was peppered with comments like “liar,” “execute your job,” and “recede back to college.”
The assembly prohibited holding handwritten signs, but people held up red pieces of paper to note their disapproval, which was often. Blum described the AHCA to KCRG as a touch-up of Obamacare.
“This isn’t a repeal and replace,” Blum told KCRG. “This is Obamacare 2.0. We’ve probably changed 10, 20 percent of the bill is total.”
His tune, however, was different during the town corridor, where he said “Trumpcare” several times, according to the Washington Post.
In Plattsburgh, current York, Rep. Elise Stefanik, another final-minute yes voter of the AHCA, also faced the backlash from her constituents. According to NPR, around 250 protesters chanting “Shame. Shame. Shame” and carrying a fake coffin with a list of pre-existing conditions external her town corridor on Monday.
The demonstrations in Iowa and current York are expected to be just a taste of what the rest of their House Republican colleagues who voted yes may face in town corridor meetings for the rest of the week. While some are opting out, others, such as current Jersey Rep. Tom MacArthur, will hold what may be one of the more contentious town corridor meetings on Wednesday in Willingboro, current Jersey, a longtime Democratic stronghold.