President-elect Donald Trump and the Republican-led senate might hate Obamacare, but one GOP representative found out the hard way how the rest of the people feel about dismantling the healthcare plan that, while not flawless, saved hundreds of thousands of lives across the United States.
While House Republicans have begun the process of dismantling the law, local media reporters caught Colorado Rep. Mike Coffman sneaking out the back door of a local community center to avoid constituents who were angry about the Affordable Care Act repeal.
Coffman, who serves Colorado’s Sixth Congressional District and recently co-wrote an op-ed urging for the repeal, arrived for his regular scheduled meeting at the Aurora Public Library and came face-to-face with more than 100 people waiting for him.
The constituents wanted to discuss the GOP’s plan to dismantle ACA, but instead of addressing their concerns, Coffman made them wait as his aides informed the crowd the lawmaker would only talk one-on-one.
“The representative didn’t have a plan. They expected just a small handful of people to show up,” constituent Krondia Siebert told NBC affiliate 9News. “We were under the understanding it was a town hall meeting and they were only allowing four people in at a time.”
“My husband passed away and the only way I was able to get insurance was through the Affordable Care Act, Obamacare,” explained another constituent, Berthie Ruoff. “I am potentially going to lose my health insurance. I’ve had a preexisting condition. I’ve had breast cancer. What’s going to happen to me? My spouse who had health insurance passed away. What do I do? You know, what am I supposed to do?”
The crowd grew so overwhelming that the police had to be called in. The officers used crime scene tape to create a perimeter, which served as a distraction, allowing Coffman to flee the building unbeknownst to the people waiting inside.
Meanwhile, the lawmaker’s office has released a statement in an attempt to clarify his position:
“Rep. Mike Coffman routinely hosts constituent one on one meetings across the district. Constituents are invited to meet individually with the congressman to express their opinions, seek help with a range of issues, and discuss legislation. Given the volume of people who came, the congressman met with four people at a time for five minutes each for a total of more than 70 constituents,” stated Coffman's chief of staff, Ben Stein.
If only the Republicans had an actual, concrete plan to offer in place of Obamacare.