Tea Party protesters demonstrate in downtown Wausau
By Katie Rosenberg
WAUSAU (WAOW)--Tea Party activists took to the streets to protest current health care reform efforts in Washington. The demonstration coincides with a similarly themed event taking place at the Capitol.
They held signs, honked horns and circled the Wausau offices of Senator Russ Feingold and Congressman Dave Obey.
Organizers say the Democratic lawmakers aren't responding to their concerns but they're ready to send their message all the way to Washington. "This is a representation of what the polls are saying all over the country and for them to deliberately ignore the will of the people is a strong message to us that they are no longer representing us," said Meg Ellefson. "I think come 2010 and again in 2012, they're going to see a lot of changes."
Meanwhile, Congressman Obey says he's not upset that protesters are demonstrating outside of his office. He says they are exercising their rights as Americans.
However, Obey notes that he fundamentally disagrees with their assessment of the current health care reform legislation. "I believe that the vast majority of Americans want help in making sure that insurance companies cannot arbitrarily jerk them around," Obey said in a phone interview. "I also think that most Americans recognize the essential indecency of not having health care available to all of its citizens."
Lawmakers are still hashing the details of the health care reform package. Three bills are currently under consideration.
The president is pushing Congress to pass the Senate version before Easter break.