Yesterday McHenry County Blog ran the first part of an article on Congressman Joe Walsh’s Thursday night Town Hall meeting at the Wauconda American Legion Hall. Here is Part 2.
A man revealed that he had just written a letter to the Daily Herald saying that Walsh had “acted like a five year old.”
“I don’t care about your child support thing.
“Work together, not acting like a five year old.
“You’re part of the problem, not part of the solution,” he continued.
“I love passion,” Walsh said.
He got a “Thank you” from the letter writer.
A liberal named Pat, who was sitting in the front row asked about the “5017 point drop in the Dow today.”
Walsh suggested that if it had been that high that no one would have come to the meeting. It was a 517 point drop.
“I think the problem is a lack of jobs. I believe what caused that is to do what Franklin Delano Roosevelt did in the first depression.
“I think that’s unavoidable. We need jobs now, not twenty years from now.
“I agree about one thing,” Walsh replied. It’s all about jobs.
“It’s a fight between world views.
If you believe as Pat does, you have to send Obama back to the White House.”
Doreen said she came “originally because I thought I’d have a big problem with your compromise issue.
“What would have happened if we hadn’t compromised?
“What you have done is actually brought that (about).
“President Obama, with all due respect, you are on the wrong freaking track.
“This far and no farther.”
Medicare was the topic of a woman with a blue top.
She said she was 55 and that the Republicans were saying there would be no change in the system for those that age and over, but wondered how those younger would be able to buy health insurance with a voucher for $6,000.
“I don’t want you to hand me a voucher for $6,000.”
“I almost didn’t vote for the Ryan Plan because I don’t think it went far enough,” Walsh said.
“Unless we do some kind of reform to Medicare, it’s not going to be around for her.
“You may not like the reform, but you’ve got to do something.
“We need an honest discussion.”
There was a counterpoint to the 55-year old woman.
It came from an 18-year old woman who said she knew that she was never going to receive Medicare.
“I’m not going to have Medicare.
“We can’t credit and credit and credit..
“We have to cut it and reform.”
“The fighting won’t solve it,” a mother of a disabled son said.
“What if I don’t have income?” she asked.
Her son $600 a month.
“If I give him anymore, he gets taxed.”
“I want my government to take care of people who can’t take care of themselves,” Walsh answered.
He referred to “the safety net.”
“You need go no further than Medicare,” he pointed out.
“Medicare wasn’t designed for (people like my parents, who live in a retirement community in Barrington).
“It has become a middle and upper class entitlement. It wasn’t designed for that.”
A 73-year old man expressed the opinion that rich guys like George Soros and the Koch brothers “control everybody in Washington.
“We need to elect Republicans and Democrats who are not beholding to lobbyists.”
Walsh put on his government teacher hat to answer.
“That’s not the problem.
You’ll never, never, ever get money out of politic,” he said.
“(The problem is) they stay there too long. They become prisoners of the system.
A man in front was taken by Walsh’s term limits argument and asked for the number of the bill Walsh had introduced.
“Only 3% have an income over $250,000,” pointed out a man near the back of the crowded room.
“Why do you keep defending taxing the rich?”
Walsh pointed out his mistake, adding the “not.”
“I want our taxes to be low, to be flat.
“Who benefits from (our complicated Tax Code)?
“Can you say GE?”
“What you have to do is simplify the code…eliminate the loopholes.”
A 73-year old Veteran named Donald went on a tear about Congressmen not being in Social Security and having a separate health care plan.
“You are correct, sir.”
The man apparently did not know that Walsh does not participate in the Congressional pension plan or the health care plan.
His question gave Walsh a chance to point that out.
Walsh also pointed out that in the original health care plan proposed by President Obama, Congressmen were not included.
It took about three months of questions such as this man’s to convince the Democrats to change that position.
A small businesswoman in back said when she was sales manager of a Fortune 500 firm, “I never heard that revenue should be taken off the table to grow the government. We can’t keep cutting without having something coming in as well.”
“Yes, we need more revenue,” Walsh agreed, but pointed to something Florida Senator Marko Rubio said:
“We don’t need more taxes to get more revenue. We need ore taxpayers to get more revenue.”
Walsh added that government has to get its “foot off business.”
He specifically mentioned Obama’s health care legislation.
He quoted a small businessman, who said, “Health care. You expect me to figure out what it costs me when the people who created it can’t figure it out?”