And not in a good way. Driehaus is, of course, the 'Blue Dog' Democrat and self-proclaimed 'fiscal conservative' who voted for the Stimulus package and Cap-and-Trade. Yesterday, Driehaus held a town hall on health care that turned raucous after he filibustered, deflected and dissembled.
Correspondent Amalaur sends in some new commentary this afternoon to address criticism that the health care town hall meetings were purposefully disrespectful and disruptive. That appears, at least in the case of the Steve Driehaus town hall, not to be the case.
I saw Rick Moran's column today where he said that "screaming in impotent rage at your congressmen is not the way to go".
As I described, the meeting was respectful and quiet to begin with. That was even the case after the moderator called any anti-Government Health Care folks "teabaggers"... after Driehaus filibustered for about 15 minutes with a prepared statement... and so on. It was only after a series of deflections and a refusal to run a real town hall meeting, like letting people line up and ask questions, that the folks started getting angry. The average age was probably 60. This wasn't a bunch of activists, these were seniors genuinely worried about losing insurance they have, they'd paid for, losing their relationship with their doctors, even getting denied care, which frequently happens to seniors in Canada and Britain. Everyone knows that state-run care will mean rationing as you can't add tens of millions of people without adding doctors!
Watch this video for an example. She asks a good question about state portability of insurance, which I mentioned in my first email. Driehaus would not answer any of these questions directly.
No one was getting shouted down here, they were cheering a question that Driehaus continued to evade and never answered. No one in the meeting hall that I saw came in to be rude or disrespectful, they were genuinely worried about losing health care.
And rightfully so, if these headlines are any indication.
Why is it that ACORN and "community organizing" and SEIU protests -- why is all of that okay, but real grassroots dissent by taxpayers, seniors and veterans is somehow "programmed", "directed" or otherwise illegitimate?
Update: Democrats see phony health bill outrage (Washington Times)
Update II: Crisis of Confidence: America's Government Losing Faith in Out-of-Touch Constituents. Also: The Corner and Virtuous Republic weigh in.