Loud outbursts, hot tempers and pleas for civility at town hall meetings around the country Saturday foreshadowed a long, hot August as Democratic lawmakers returning home faced resistance to proposals to reform the nation's costly health care system. . . .
Similar exchanges have recently taken place at town halls nationwide, as Democratic lawmakers return home for the August recess to rally support for President Obama's top domestic priority -- revamping a costly health care system that leaves millions without insurance.
The episodes have drawn widespread media attention, and Republicans have seized on them as well as polls showing a decline in support for President Barack Obama and his agenda as evidence that public support is lacking for his signature legislation.
Pushing back, Democrats have accused Republicans of sanctioning mob tactics and trying to sabotage the democratic process.
The Republican Party has said it's not behind the protests, but some conservative groups have encouraged people to show up at the meetings and let the lawmakers know about their opposition.
Top White House officials counseled Democratic senators Thursday on coping with disruptions at public events on health care this summer, officials said, and promised the party and allies would respond with twice the force if any individual lawmaker is criticized in television advertising. . . .
Messina, the deputy White House chief of staff, also said any advertising attack would be met with a bigger response, these officials said.
"If you get hit, we will punch back twice as hard," Messina told senators, according to two people in the room.
I, for one, am very much looking forward to Tuesday.
And, to find a town hall near you: GOP & DEM.