Amid Obamacare repeal efforts, Republicans facing hostile constituents back home

GOPers face angry town halls

In the small town of North Harmony, New York, things were anything but harmonious this weekend during a town hall held by conservative Republican Congressman Tom Reed.

“The Affordable Care Act doesn’t work,” Reed said.

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Rep. Tom Reed faces a largely hostile town hall crowd

“It is working for a lot of people, so why do we throw the baby out with the bath water, let’s fix it,” a constituent replied.

It’s similar to the reception other Republicans have gotten at home including Jason Chaffetz of Utah.

“Do your job, do your job,” a crowd chanted at him.

Anger over the threatened repeal of Obamacare is one of the biggest issues, but there are others.

Ezra Levin is with the Indivisible Project, one of numerous progressive groups trying to turn anti-Trump anger into a national movement.

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Ezra Levin CBS News

“As long as Donald Trump, his administration and this Congress are pursing and agenda that is at odds with most Americans, I think you’re going to see a lot of people standing up to resist it,” Levin said.

It’s modeled on the tea party movement that rose up in opposition to President Obama’s health care reform plan in his first term.

Levin claims this movement is coming together more quickly.

“This isn’t just a city center thing. There are groups in 99.5 percent of congressional districts,” he said.

Some Republicans have claimed that their critics are professional protesters. Stay-at-home mom Alyswin  Preis, who is attending Tuesday night’s town hall with Congressman Dave Brat in Blackstone, Virginia, begs to differ

Inside the group behind the anti-Trump protest movement

“We are not paid protesters, we are not agitators, we are just people that really want to have our concerns answered,” she said.

Bob Charlton voted for Donald Trump and went to the town hall support Congressman Brat.

“I hope it doesn’t just change into a referendum on the Trump presidency,” he said.

The protests have even gotten the attenion of President Trump. On Thursday evening, he tweeted, “The so-called angry crowds in home districts of some Republicans are actually, in numerous cases, planned out by liberal activists. Sad!” 

  • Chip Reid

    Chip Reid is CBS News' national correspondent.