Friday, August 14, 2009

Astroturf Doctors In TownHall Meeting?

You may have seen Wednesday's video of Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee (D-TX) speaking on her cell phone while a cancer survivor spoke to her about health care reform. Well now comes news that the pro-Obamacare voices in the crowd were not entirely legitimate. A primary care physician identified as Dr. Roxana Meyer stood up and praised the President’s health care plan for overhauling a broken system. Meyer said: “I don’t know what there is in the bill that creates such panic.” The Congresswoman asked the crowd to give her a round of applause for being a doctor, hugged her and then asked “How long have you been practicing?” to which “Dr.” Meyer answered “Four years,” which was followed by more applause and a gushing grin on the face of “Dr.” Meyer. The problem? Roxana Meyer is not a doctor, but rather an Obama campaign delegate.

In fact, Roxana Meyer was sitting in the audience with a friend who also worked for the Obama campaign and was famously photographed hanging a Che Guevara revolutionary flag above her official Obama campaign office desk. The Houston Chronicle, which reported on the townhall and highlighted the exchange, knew that Ms. Meyer was an Obama delegate but was unaware she was not a doctor. The Chronicle did not report her campaign background, but has since updated their website to reflect she is not a physician. In responding to inquiries, Roxana Meyer says she possessed “spontaneity” in her deception and she thought it would “help her credibility.” Yes, she gave all Obamacare supporters loads of credibility today. We hope that the President’s chorus will denounce her actions as loudly as they have protested regular parents, citizens, students who have driven themselves to their representative’s townhalls to ask serious questions about the “reform” of one sixth of the U.S. economy.

To me this calls into attention the "love fest" that was Mr Obama's townhall meeting in Portsmouth.
It would have been far more interesting, and no doubt far more enlightening, if the audience had been first-come, first-served. At least then you might have had the seeds for a lively discussion on this desert of an issue.
Of course there was that portly gent who tried to press Obama on the way Medicaid played around with his Lipitor script for two years. The president thanked him for a great question and then proceeded to caress him in a cocoon of cool rhetoric.

There was the poignant moment, perfect for the network news, when Obama called on Julia, a young girl from Malden, who was about 75 or 80 years away from the nearest “death panel.” She asked the president why the signs outside the gym were so mean. She was referring to the “Obamunism” “Socialism Sucks! Leave my Medicare Alone!” "Give Us The Same Health Care As Congress" placards, or my favorite, “I WILL NOT DISCUSS MY END OF LIFE OPTIONS WITH ANYONE!”

Mr. Obama ate up Julia’s tender inquiry pretty much the same way A-Rod treated that pitch in the 15th inning of last weekend’s game with the Sox. He hit it out of the park.

President Obama should have returned to Portsmouth yesterday more like Candidate Obama. The machinery of the White House makes spontaneity impossible. This was a ticketed affair made up of those who cared enough to apply online.

The One on The Right

Ballad of Ira Hayes

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