Progressives to target GOP town halls

The left is borrowing the Tea Party's strategy and stirring up trouble for Republicans during the August recess

By Jillian Rayfield
Published July 31, 2013 1:18PM (EDT)

A progressive group will make a push this August to stir up trouble for Republicans when they return to their home districts and participate in local events and town halls. The group Americans United for Change is launching a website called Accountable Congress to alert progressive activists to when Republicans will be holding events in their area. Upcoming targets include Chris Christie, Ted Cruz and Peter King.

Brad Woodhouse, the president of the group, says that though in the past the idea has been to stealthily confront Republican lawmakers at town halls, "sometimes it's been too stealth, and we haven’t generated enough activity. He added: "Since everyone knows that both sides are doing this, we're going to be public-facing about it."

From The Huffington Post:

House Republicans are putting together their own August recess playbook. The House Republican Conference has created a 31-page document offering instructions to members for meeting with constituents, promoting the House GOP's agenda and garnering media attention. It does not, however, advise members on how to deal with confrontational town halls.

Democrats took a thumping during the 2009 summer recess, when lawmakers faced tea party activists at town hall meetings during the height of the health care debate. The party lost control of its message, with the myth of "death panels" often dominating discussions.

Jillian Rayfield

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at

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Chris Christie Progressives Republicans Tea Party Ted Cruz Town Hall Protests