Citizen Action Holds Congressional Town Hall in Paul Ryan’s District (without Paul Ryan)

Citizen Action Holds Congressional Town Hall in Paul Ryan’s District (without Paul Ryan)

Rep. Mark Pocan Answers Health Care Questions from Paul Ryan’s Constituents

Citizen Action of Wisconsin hosted a health care town hall meeting featuring Wisconsin Congressman Mark Pocan in House Speaker Paul Ryan’s Congressional District. Speaker Ryan was invited but did not attend the meeting that filled an auditorium at Gateway Technical College in downtown Racine. The event was co-sponsored by Wisconsin Federation of Nurses & Health Professionals and Community for Change.

Paul Ryan has not had an open forum with his constituents since the election, despite the intense public interest in talking about the controversial health plan he authored and pushed through the House of Representatives. Speaker Ryan said he would hold no public town hall meetings because he does not want “a screaming fest.”

The public town hall that Speaker Ryan skipped on Saturday was anything but disruptive. The session began with three nurses offering their perspective on the GOP health plans, followed by a detailed discussion with Congressman Pocan, who although he represents the Second Congressional District grew up in Ryan’s district in nearby Kenosha. Paul Ryan’s constituents peppered Congressman Pocan with questions about who would be harmed by the Trump-Ryan health care plan, how the Affordable Care Act could be improved, and whether using BadgerCare as a public option could eventually lead to Medicare for All.

The town hall was part of Citizen Action of Wisconsin’s new Health Care for All organizing co-op which is led by nurses, doctors, and patients. For more information contact Katie Dunn, katie.dunn@citizenactionwi.org

See media coverage from Racine Journal Times; Milwaukee Public Radio, and by John Nichols in the Capital Times. Also listen to interview with Executive Director Robert Kraig on Sly.

Northeast Wisconsin Co-op Members Protest Close Ron Johnson Meeting

Another Wisconsin conservative politician who is critical to the health care fight but refuses to hold open public forums is Senator Ron Johnson. A day after indicating he would vote to bring the latest version of the Senate health care bill to the floor, Johnson appeared Friday morning in rural Brillion (30 miles east of Appleton and 40 miles southwest of Green Bay) at an invite only-listening session that was closed to the public. Citizen Action Northeast Wisconsin Co-op members were on hand to protest, and talked to two local television stations about Walker’s refusal to meet open with his own constituents. They called particular attention to the fact that Johnson seems to be shifting to a yes vote because he supports Ted Cruz’s proposal to re-legalize the sale of dangerous substandard health insurance policies.

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