In the weeks following the release by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) of his budget proposal to overhaul Medicare, he and other Republicans across the country have had to contend with harsh opposition to the measure.
Also in Florida, Representative Daniel Webster (R-Fla.) was confronted by a boisterous crowd at a town hall meeting in Orlando. The audience seemed to be organized, bearing signs that read, “Hands Off Medicare” and “Tax the Rich.”
Webster responded to the crowd by assuring them that the proposed changes would not affect current retirees. “Not one senior citizen is harmed by this budget,” he declared, adding that without significant spending reforms, his granddaughter was “looking at a bankrupt country.”
As far as voter frustration, some Republicans contend that the angry crowds at town hall meetings are not representational of the general reaction of the American people to the proposal. Pennsylvania’s Republican Representative Lou Barletta said, “My town halls are being disrupted by Democrats. They are apparently being sent to us to do just that. I am not sensing the general public is angered over Medicare reform. When I explain that people over 55 are not affected there is almost a sigh of relief.”