120 Heckle Rep. Holt at 'Town Hall' Meeting
"Holt (D:NJ) Is IN Deep Crap
MARLBORO — As Rep. Rush Holt prepared to talk economy, health care, education and national security inside Marlboro Memorial Middle School tonight, Ian Gratton of Farmingdale was sending a message of his own.
"We are wide awake...and you're fired," read a sign Gratton held up for passersby outside the school.
"I'm tired of (Holt) voting for this healthcare — or should I call it Commie-care," Gratton said, joined by a handful of members of the Jersey Shore Tea Party Patriots outside the Nolan Road school. "I don't want that. . . . I'm against big government."
Inside, too, the crowd at Holt's "town hall" meeting was small — a little more than 120 attendees — but vocal. Holt, a Democrat from the state's 12th Congressional District, tried to talk education, open space, flight safety and care for seniors. But he was heckled and shouted down by attendees who wanted to talk about health care, job creation and the nation's spending.
At one point, the congressman threatened to take the meeting to another room and leave his haranguers to shout among themselves.
"I need to hear from you in order to speak on your behalf — to let (government) know what is working (and) what is not working in New Jersey," Holt told the jeering crowd. "It has been a tough time for families in New Jersey and throughout the nation."
Among other issues, attendees criticized Holt's support of the $800 billion American Recovery Act and his vote for healthcare reform.
"Why would you vote for an $800 billion bill that you didn't read?"
asked Mitch Marks of Marlboro regarding the stimulus bill.
"Why are you enslaving us in debt?"