CHICAGO (CBS) – Hundreds of protesters turned out Saturday in west suburban St. Charles to send a message to save the ACA and demand for Town Hall meetings with Republican Congressman Randy Hultgren, who refuses to hold such meetings.
Hultgren once hosted town hall meetings, but now prefers coffees, conference calls and constituent one-on-one meetings. He said he is getting good feedback on healthcare and veterans issues with these specialized meetings. WBBM’s Bob Roberts reports.
Allison Klein is one of a handful of people chosen for the one-on-ones and said it was his excuse to give bad answers.
“It was clearly an intimidation tactic, to say, you can only meet one-on-one in an undisclosed, secret location with a congressman,” Klein said. “And then be escorted by a linebacker security guard.”
And an aid who timed each meeting.
Another protester said Hultgren is a chicken, who either has no idea what his constituents want or does not care.
Protester Ursula Small asked why Hultgren is afraid.
“That’s not the same as having a town hall, where you can meet with many of your constituents,” Small said. “They can ask their questions, they can show you their displeasure. And you have to answer them ad-lib, in the moment.”
Hultgren said opponents would use such meeting to disrupt and prevent civil dialogue.
Hundreds of motorists at the busy intersection of Highway 64 and Randall Road honked their support for the protesters.
There also has been protest recently asking Republican Congressman Peter Roskam to hold town hall meetings.