Health Debate Produces Angry Protests, Angry Retorts
By Jonathan Allen, CQ Staff Jonathan Allen, Cq Staff – Thu Aug 6, 12:03 am ET
The Earth-scorching August firefight over health care has given rise to questions about the point at which stifling civil discussion damages the democratic process.
All across the country, conservative opponents are clamoring to disrupt town-hall meetings about the proposed overhaul of the nation's health care system, using GOP-generated talking points to shout down Democratic congressmen who attempt to explain the plan.
The Constitution protects their right to speak freely, but Democrats say that they are limiting rather than promoting an open exchange of ideas.
Some experts on political organization say that despite the disruption of Democratic-run events -- and divided public feelings on the health care overhaul -- the shout-down strategy betrays an essential weakness on the Republican side, not a strength.
And this is a non bias news report.