Hasterts, Healthcare & Hysteria in IL-14

by , posted on Tuesday, August 25th, 2009 at 3:52 pm

If you’ve been following the local press in IL-14, you know that Ethan Hastert is currently seeking the Repub nomination to fill his Daddy Denny’s former seat, currently held by Bill Foster, and you’d also be aware that this seat is high on the Repubs wish list for recapture in 2010.

If you’ve been following the local press for the last week, you’d be able to discern that, what with their “name” candidate, and their itch to take revenge for the lost of such a high profile seat, this area has become somewhat of a priority for targeting by the opponents of meaningful healthcare reform as well.

First you’ve got your “Recess Rally” brought to you by

“Many of the original groups behind TaxDayTeaParty.com”

who want you to know that the National Recess Rally is:

“a collaborative effort to make it known that we will not stand for socialized, government controlled healthcare.”

These ingenious collaborators recently made the brilliant move of organizing a protest outside Bill Foster’s Batavia office on a day when the office is normally closed, and Foster had public appearances scheduled to speak to constituents at festivals in Elburn and DeKalb.

According to the Kane County Chronicle, the protest was attended by about a hundred people, and featured as it’s first speaker one “Erin Sharpe of Villa Park.” Villa Park being a community in Republican Peter Roskam’s district.

Not that there weren’t any actual residents of IL-14 in attendance. In fact the rally was attended by one Anna Alcott of Batavia, who took the time to explain to the Kane County Chronicle’s reporter

…why people are upset, why they go to town hall meetings and they’re screaming and they’re rude?” Alcott said. “It is not rude for them (elected officials) to tell me ‘no no no no’ when this is the most important issue of my lifetime and I can’t get any answers from my congressman?”

Maybe it’s just me, coming from the perspective of having raised four children, but that sounds like the explanation is that if Republicans get told “no” their immediate reaction is to have a temper tantrum. Like a two-year-old. Seems consistent with their national behavior on health care.

Alcott does go on in the article to state that she and her husband have tried several times since August 1st to meet with Foster and have been unable to do so.

Well, I have to admit that they may have something there. I tried to meet with Foster myself on Monday, August 10, and was unable to do so, though I walked smack into his office uninvited and with no forewarning…only to find out he was in Israel. I had to make do with a two-hour meeting with Foster’s District Director, who, when I thought I had talked myself out about this issue after about fifteen minutes, urged me to go on and then spent quite a bit of time discussing the details of various aspects of the current legislation. And reassuring me, by the way, that Foster stands by his previous statement of support for a public option. She also mentioned that “most people just have questions” but conceded that “it’s getting very difficult to get information to people who want answers, because of all the noise, though we keep trying.”

Still, the Alcott’s are convinced Foster is hiding.

To which the Chronicle offered this up:

Foster spokesman Dan McDonald said the congressman was at festivals in DeKalb and Elburn Saturday and was not hiding.

“He was not aware of the public rally and we are closed on Saturday,” McDonald said. “We were not invited.”

(emphasis mine)

Well, no, and nor were Foster’s constituents invited, save an insider group of tea-baggers, from anything I can discern. In fact, the only non-tea-bagger who seems to have been on site was a Mr. Steven Hvale of Batavia (an actual resident of IL-14!) who happened by the rally on his way to the library and took the time to respond to Peter Roskam’s constituent’s wildly inaccurate claims about healthcare reform with this pithy rejoinder: “That is a lie.”

All of which leads me to Ethan Hastert. He has two, count them two, health care town hall meetings scheduled for tomorrow. Funny that, because much like this tea-bagger rally, they seem to be rather stealthily publicized. No one seems to have invited the local citizenry. You can’t even find notice of them on his campaign’s website, and the one local newspaper story I was able to find about them could not even give the addresses in the cities where they are to occur.

After doing some searching today, I was finally able to find address information for these events on a right-wing local blog. All of which leads me to believe that, like the “Recess Rally,” these “town hall meetings” are put-up jobs with word of them being spread through back-channel local Republican machinery and are designed for the sole purpose of attacking healthcare reform.

Short notice, I know, and I myself will be at work, but can anyone go?

Info is as follows:

WHEN: Wednesday, August 26, 2009,12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.

WHERE: Blackberry Township Hall, 43W390 Main Street Road (about ¼ mile east of Fisherman’s Inn located at the intersection of Route 47 and Main Street Road)

WHEN: Wednesday, August 26, 2009, 4:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

WHERE: Loveland Community Center, 513 W. 2nd Street, Dixon, IL

It just occurred to me that I am publicizing a Hastert event…how weird is that?

Crossposted at DailyKos


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One Response to “Hasterts, Healthcare & Hysteria in IL-14”

  1. kcty says:

    talk about candidates and elected officials playing politics! When are the going to work FOR THE PEOPLE, the General Welfare!

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