Fox News reports that “Democratic lawmakers and their liberal supporters are trying to ignite a storm of protest at town hall meetings being held by Republicans during the current congressional recess that they hope will give them momentum going into the 2012 presidential election season.”
They’re encouraging supporters to show up at Republican town hall meetings and give them hell about supporting Rep. Paul Ryan’s “Path to Prosperity” budget, which is so much less warm and sparkly than President Obama’s magical pixie dust plan for ten or twelve years of two or four trillion in deficit reduction, achieved through tax hikes on evil people who will barely notice when some of the money they spend all day counting disappears. Meanwhile, MoveOn.org is encouraging the faithful to test out Medi-Scare campaign tactics. There have been some outbursts at town halls, and Paul Ryan himself got booed at a meeting last week.
Is this really what Democrats want? Because former Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi said that town hall protests are “simply un-American” two years ago. Together with then-Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, she said those disruptions were occurring “because opponents are afraid not just of differing views – but of the facts themselves.”
Pelosi and Hoyer said town hall protests were part of an “ugly campaign” that was designed “not merely to misrepresent” legislation, but to “disrupt public meetings and prevent members of Congress and constituents from conducting a civil dialogue.”
Pelosi was also famous for insisting that town hall protests were examples of “Astroturf,” meaning that “Many of these opponents who are shutting down civil discussion are organized by out-of-district, extremist political groups, and industry-supported lobbying firms.” Out-of-district extremist political groups? That sounds just like MoveOn.org! And as for “industry-supported lobbying firms,” well, the United States government is now the largest single industry on the planet. Of course it wants to lobby vigorously against reductions to its funding and power. Why shouldn’t that count as Astroturf?
Is this really what the Democrats want? An ugly un-American Astroturf campaign born from their fear of differing views? Nancy Pelosi must be absolutely mortified.
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