Most Congress members conducting town hall meetings this month have chosen a noncombative posture to deal with angry participants who disrupt the proceedings. Not Rep. Barney Frank.
At a lively two-hour meeting Tuesday night in Dartmouth, Massachusetts, Frank gave as good as he got in confronting opponents of overhauling the nation’s health care system.
The crowded hall had both supporters and detractors, but the opposing side was much louder and more raucous, booing the Massachusetts Democrat from the moment he was introduced and shouting questions and challenges at him throughout.
“You want me to talk about it or do you want to yell?” he asked over and over when interrupted while trying to answer. Continued shouting brought a sterner rebuke. “Disruption never helps your cause,” he said more than once. “It just looks like you’re afraid to have rational discussion.”
While Frank attempted to respond to all questions, he gave up when one woman compared health care proposals favored by Frank and President Obama to policies of Nazi Germany.Read »