MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Minnesota Republican Congressman Jason Lewis on Thursday condemned demonstrators who carried their protest to the front door of his family’s home.
Nineteen health-care protesters from progressive group Take Action Minnesota went to Lewis’s house on Wednesday because they said he refuses to hold a town hall meeting. Lewis called the demonstration immature and dangerous.
Protesters have camped out at the offices of Republican members of Congress who have not held public town hall meetings, including Congressman Jason Lewis.
On Wednesday, they tried a new tactic and it got the congressman’s attention. The 12-minute protest was live-streamed on Facebook, showing demonstrators at the front door of the congressman’s house.
They were complaining about his vote to repeal Obamacare and cut Medicaid.
“Medicaid has been such a godsend to people in my life,” one protester said.
Reaction from the freshman Republican was swift: On Twitter, declaring “The dangerous targeting of families must stop.”
“If somebody were on your property and you had small kids at home, would you be worried? I think everybody would be worried. It’s the notion that the rules don’t apply,” Lewis said.
The protest was staged by Take Action Minnesota, a progressive advocacy group that organizes public action campaigns. It says it’s been trying unsuccessfully for months to get Lewis to hold a health care town hall meeting.
“Governing is a two-way street. And if you don’t come to us, we will come to you,” Kenza Hadj-Moussa of Take Action Minnesota said.
Lewis called the protest “a dangerous ramping up of rhetoric,” even linking it to the shooting July of fellow GOP Congressman Steve Scalise. He said it actually makes him less likely to hold a town meeting.
“These are not constituents who all of a sudden woke up and said, ‘Oh gosh what did I do?’ They are dyed in the wool partisans, wanting to interfere and want to interfere with the rights of other constituents who actually want a dialogue,” Lewis said.
But organizers say the protest, which included people with walkers and canes, was not threatening in any way.
“I think what’s threatening is cuts to Medicaid. That’s what’s dangerous. That’s what his constituents want him to know,” Hadj-Moussa said.
The protest at Congressman Lewis’ Woodbury home is similar to demonstrations all around the country opposing the Obamacare repeal. Liberal grassroots groups have been showing up at the offices of members of Congress, and now at their personal homes.