Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) was greeted with shouts and booing during a speech marking Martin Luther King Day in Spokane. Thousands of people were at the rally that began before a march through downtown Spokane, where Mayor David Condon and Rep. McMorris Rodgers used the occasion to praise unity. When McMorris Rodgers spoke, some persons attending the rally shouted "liar" and “bulls---” while issuing chants about Obamacare.
Leftist website AltLeft offered that the tactics used by opponents of Obamacare at the Spokane rally somehow echoed tactics used by members of the Tea Party movement: “The crowd’s chants resembled similar tactics by conservative activists during the lead up to the Affordable Care Act’s passage in 2009. Conservative groups, some of them funded by the billionaire Koch brothers, staged protests at Democratic lawmakers’ events, often preventing the lawmaker from speaking over the din.”
McMorris Rodgers is the fourth highest-ranking Republican in the House of Representatives, and chairs the House GOP conference. She told the audience “We may not always agree with one another, but we can come together and find common ground to create change and progress right here in Eastern Washington,” before the interruptions of people chanting “save our health care.”
In a statement to KXLY local news, McMorris Rodgers said she is looking forward to a smooth and stable “transition out of Obamacare” in order to install a “21st Century health care system.”
A frequent detractor of the Affordable Care Act, McMorris Rodgers said last week that “No one who has coverage because of Obamacare today, will lose that coverage the day it’s repealed — we’re committed to a smooth and stable transition for those currently receiving care.”
On the 5th anniversary of the passing of ACA, she posted a request on Facebook for constituents’ stories about Obamacare. She wrote in 2015, “Whether it’s turned your tax filing into a nightmare, you’re facing skyrocketing premiums, or your employer has reduced your work hours, I want to hear about it.” What she got was thousands of responses from people saying that Obamacare had helped them.
Rallies were held in cities across the country on January 15, the day before the observance of Martin Luther King Day, by Democrats and progressives in support of Obamacare. In Michigan, for example, a rally held in Warren -- a Detroit suburb -- featured Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), Senator Bernie Sanders, (I-VT), Planned Parenthood President Cecile Richards, and the entire Michigan Democratic Congressional delegation: Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters, and Congressional Representatives John Conyers, Sander Levin, Dan Kildee, Brenda Lawrence and Debbie Dingell.
Progressives and allies are pushing hard to proclaim their support of Obamacare while Republicans such as McMorris Rodgers continue to discuss its repeal and replacement. According to the leftist ElectaBlog website, the Michigan rally heard from Sen. Peters (D-MI) who said he heard "compelling" stories from persons who said they have benefited from Obamacare. "And now they're afraid of going backward, so it's a scary time."