Forced to Defend Healthcare Plan, Lawmakers Face 'Supercharged Resistance'

Republican congressmen Darrell Issa and Duncan Hunter, both of California, faced large, angry crowds at town hall meetings on Saturday, offering a preview of what awaits GOP lawmakers if they continue their efforts to ram through a widely unpopular healthcare reform law while ducking attempts to hold President Donald Trump accountable for his conflicts of interest and possible ties to Russia. 

According to the San Diego Union Tribune: “About 1,000 people poured into an Oceanside community center for two back-to-back forums with Issa. About that many showed up in Ramona for Hunter’s single session, but only about 400 could fit in the concert hall where it was held.”

The paper reported:

The Huffington Post added:

People documented the resistance on social media:

Issa and Hunter were not the only ones who encountered engaged constituents on Saturday. Hundreds turned out for a town hall meeting with with Rep. Tom Reed (R-N.Y.) in Ithaca, New York; in Texas, Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas) faced questions on healthcare, education, and immigration. 

As they did during last month’s Congressional recess, progressives plan to hold lawmakers’ feet to the fire during the upcoming April break—and to increase the pressure on elected officials between now and then. 

“The reality of the healthcare repeal bill will supercharge the resistance,” Ben Wikler, MoveOn.org’s Washington director, told The Hill. “This is really going to be a full court press.”

“We’re starting to gear up to keep the members of Congress’ phones ringing off the hook continuously until they commit or follow through on their commitment to vote against this bill,” he added. 

MoveOn is holding an emergency call on Sunday night to “lay out the 18-day strategy to save healthcare for millions, including what each of us can do where we live.”

Meanwhile, Indivisible project board member Sarah Dohl told The Hill: “We’ll keep the heat on as we see further committee action, but we’re really focusing on the upcoming two week recess that starts April 8.” She pointed to Sen. Tom Cotton’s (R-Ark.) vocal opposition to the GOP’s American Healthcare Act (AHCA) as evidence that town hall resistance is working. 

The Hill reported:

As People’s Action co-director LeeAnn Hall warned lawmakers in an op-ed last week: “The groundswell is not going away.”

Or as former Barack Obama speechwriter Jon Favreau wrote Saturday on Twitter:

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