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Supporters, opponents eye Aug. 20 health care forum with Wexler; other congressmen uncertain

by George Bennett | August 10th, 2009



Supporters and opponents of a Democratic health care overhaul bill and at least one member of Palm Beach County’s congressional delegation will converge next week for a public forum sponsored by a labor-backed retiree group.

U.S. Rep. Robert Wexler, D-Boca Raton, plans to attend the Aug. 20 event at 1 p.m. at the South County Civic Center west of Delray Beach. The event is sponsored by the Florida Alliance for Retired Americans, which is affiliated with the AFL-CIO and supports the Democratic bill.

Other local members of Congress were invited but it wasn’t immediately clear today whether any others would attend.

Opponents of the legislation plan to show up as well.

“We’ll be there with signs but, more importantly, we’ll be there with questions,” said Everett Wilkinson, the state coordinator for the Tea Party Patriots group.

Other health care meetings around the U.S. have been raucous affairs, but Florida Alliance President Tony Fransetta says he plans to ensure that the Aug. 20 meeting is orderly. He said audience members will have to submit questions in writing.

“I’m going to get with the Sheriff’s department. We’re not going to tolerate somebody coming in and disrupting the whole thing,” Fransetta said. “If somebody jumps up, screaming, in a disruptive manner, I’m going to make sure they’re escorted from the meeting.”

Wilkinson said his group doesn’t plan to be disruptive.

“We don’t encourage that. We’re trying to encourage discussion,” Wilkinson said.

In addition to Wexler, Fransetta said U.S. Rep. Ron Klein, D-Boca Raton, is scheduled to attend. Klein’s office did not immediately confirm his participation.

U.S. Rep. Alcee Hastings, D-Miramar, hasn’t determined whether he will attend, Hastings’ office said. U.S. Rep. Tom Rooney, R-Tequesta, declined because of a scheduling conflict.

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13 Responses to “Supporters, opponents eye Aug. 20 health care forum with Wexler; other congressmen uncertain”

  1. No Obama Care Says:

    Of course they hold a meeting at 1:00pm on a weekday when most people are at work. They are trying to crowd the halls with people who do not have a job looking for more government handouts. Those of us with a job should be at work helping to feed the machine and those without a job should be out looking for employment! I am so sick of these elitist egomaniacs.

  2. wil Says:

    all of the noise making at the town hall meetings show just how uninformed most americans are. two of the largest health networks in the country are administered by the federal goverment, medicare and the VA system should they continue to run these or let the private sector handle them.would you seniors want medicare to be part of the private insurance system, I do not believe you would. so people should quit complaining about goverment run healthcare when it has been around for a long time, now is time for the rest of us citizens to benefit from govermental intervention. nothing is perfect, healthcare based on insurance coverage only is not working for a large segment of our population.

  3. Yes, Wil Says:

    Your right Wil, the VA and Medicare are government run healthcare. Go ask a vet how well it is run, or ask where much of the money for the new healthcare is supposed to be coming from “Medicare waste”. So let’s make the big mess that is the VA and Medicare even bigger with even more waste! Great idea Wil!

  4. Mike Says:

    “…audience members will have to submit questions in writing.”

    Which means censorship.

    Which means Wexler, etc will not have to answer why Congress and Barry Hussein are exempt from the plan.

    Which means only questions favoring the plan will be asked

    Mr Fransetta you should be ashamed

  5. hedlykarok Says:

    It’s funny how those that bitch the loudest about ‘waste’ know the least. Medicare operates at 3% overhead/administrative expense. Private insurance at 10x that, around 30% – that is waste. At least waste for the insureds, not the executives that get annual salaries in the mulit-millions. Medicare for all would also eliminate the need for Medicaid, saving the states billions every year. Medicare doesn’t dictate procedures, doctors or facilities; for-profit corporations do because it increases their profits. The VA bargains for lowest price prescriptions and the facilities that made so much news for being in pathetic shape were run by a for-profit company, not the VA itself.
    We don’t seem to mind ‘socialized’ police, fire, roads and water – why not our basic survival?

  6. Wellington Resident Says:

    Ha, Tony Fransetta!? He’s a self-important gadfly who envisions himself a kingmaker. He’s a retired union lackey. Trys real hard to be important in Wellingon but it hasn’t worked. Only reason Wexler is attending this farce is that it is in west Delray. Klein’s too smart to show up. Doesn’t want to be identified too closely with Obama’s plan.

  7. Ernie Says:

    All questions need to be submitted in WRITING? Why, so the answers can be pre-screened, pre-approved and rehearsed?

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  10. Rick Caird Says:

    Entrance to this meeting is by ticket only. The tickets are being given first to the union affiliated coalition. If there are any tickets left over (doubtful), they will be handed out Wednesday to some undefined “waiting list”.

    So, the question is: “Why is Wexler so afraid of his constituents (disgustingly, I am one of his)? Did he have only an afternoon to take away from his home in Maryland


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