August 5th, 2009
12:14 PM ET
5 years ago

Democrats accuse GOP of inciting mobs

A DNC Web ad accuses the GOP of inciting mobs.
A DNC Web ad accuses the GOP of inciting mobs.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – The Democratic National Committee will amplify its charge that Republicans are responsible for “inciting angry mobs of a small number of rabid right wing extremists … to disrupt” town hall meetings in a new 65 second Web video that will release Wednesday morning.

The video shows footage of angry constituents and protestors at recent events and then flashes pictures of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, House Minority Leader John Boehner, Republican National Committee Chairman Michael Steele, and even conservative talk radio icon Rush Limbaugh on the screen.

“They lost the election,” the narrator says. “They lost on the recovery act, the budget and children's health care. They've lost the confidence of the American people after eight years of failed policies that ruined our economy and cost millions of jobs. Now, desperate Republicans and their well funded allies are organizing angry mobs – just like they did during the election. Their goal? Destroy President Obama.”

The DNC issued a sharp statement Tuesday accusing Republicans and GOP allies of encouraging and coordinating the disruptive behavior at the town hall meetings.

UPDATE: Republican National Committee spokeswoman Gail Gitcho said Democrats were using the charge to dismiss criticism of the president's health care plan.

"In a remarkable example of callousness, the White House and Democrats have reduced the concerns and opinions of millions of Americans to 'manufactured' and have labeled them as 'angry extremists,' for voicing their opposition to President Obama’s government-run health care experiment," she said. "Millions of American families, small business owners, doctors, veterans, seniors – and even House and Senate Democrats – have real and serious concerns over the president’s risky and costly government-run health care experiment.

"And they should – taxpayers will pay for this costly experiment because it will raise taxes without decreasing costs, increase the deficit, will lead to less choice and lower-quality health coverage. Before heading into recess, the Democrats should have read the dozens of public opinion polls showing that a majority of Americans believe President Obama’s government-run health care experiment is a bad idea. Are Democrats so out of touch that they are shocked to learn that Americans are concerned about their $1.6 trillion government-run health care experiment?"


Filed under: DNC
soundoff (309 Responses)
  1. bdmiller

    the GOP is doing what they did during the election – they whip the kool-aid drinking, simple minded people into a frenzy with lies, propoganda and misrepresentations. it is the most pathetic thing i've ever seen. drink up simpletons.

    August 5, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  2. Tony

    The republicans never tell the truth. If they did, nobody would vote for them. So, they have to lie. They have some very well financed special interest groups helping them put out the lies. Americans suffer greatly because of these lies. Tell me how my family and I are better off without health insurance.

    August 5, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  3. rev

    Again, the Republicans are lying... what a surprise. Their 'playbook' for inciting anger, unruly mobs and hate has already been exposed and now they're claiming innocence? Ha! They're just as "innocent" in letting the Bush Administration drive our economy into the toilet by approving all of his failed economic policies. GOP: Greedy Old Perverts.

    August 5, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  4. Common Sense

    When do the brown shirts start showing up to beat down open discussion of issues? This is not democracy, it looks more like the shameful tactics of people like Rove and the Swiftboaters. The Republican party does not seem to be getting the picture, America is rejecting extremist politics.

    August 5, 2009 09:53 am at 9:53 am |
  5. Peggy - TX

    If, as RNC's Gitcho said the protester are merely expressing thier view, then the GOP would not be disrupting the town hall meeting after expressing thier partiular point of view. What is clear, is that they are not trying to communicate. The short slogans repeated over and over again prevent everyone, including the politicians holding the town hall meetings, from being able to have a discission or express a complex view point. The planned, funded, and corrdinated actions of the GOP step on the 1st amendment and the rights of Americans to assemble and disuss political issues.

    August 5, 2009 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  6. LIP

    And what happened to freedom of speech?
    At least they aren't staged events where the Democrats have someone ask a specific prearranged question. At least they are spontaneous events. People have a right to know everything there is to know. Debate is good for America and we need more of it and less trying to shove something down our throats that doesn't fit.

    August 5, 2009 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  7. tpbco

    This is hysterical...even the Bush Administration didn't stoop this low. Are the liberal elitists this far out of touch.

    Usually.

    August 5, 2009 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  8. John

    It's not an empty accusation, it's true. Republican lobbying groups have circulated a memo identifying strategies and best practices for disrupting town halls, including shouting down speakers and other tactics designed to prevent meaningful debate on health insurance reform.

    August 5, 2009 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  9. Santana from California

    Let's not to forget to mention 'FOX' news who rallies these extremist to the call. FOX is the worst of all them. Their Motto of "Fair & Balance" is a joke! The sad part is people actually watch this crap, instead of finding a news problem (like Public broadcasting) to get the real news. I'm independent but I really do not like what Republicans are doing, and disappointed in Democrats for not standing up sooner!!! Give the President a chance, six months is so little time to make such large changes to our country!

    August 5, 2009 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  10. Gary

    "Stacking" the audience with people with scripted duties (such as disruptive yelling) is an old, old trick. The repubs can't think of anything original!

    August 5, 2009 09:55 am at 9:55 am |
  11. dominican mama 4 Obama

    "Are Democrats so out of touch ..."

    Now that's an expected twist. The Republiklans' demise is exactly because they are out of touch: out of touch with technology; out of touch with the average American; out of touch with the times; out of touch with true patriotism; out of touch with diplomacy.

    The Rethugs have become irrelevant troglodytes. The only thing they are truly in touch with is the money that they've made off the backs of average citizens, through unnecessary wars, and big business lobbyists. They are keeping both hands on their money while attempting to drive the car. They are just an accident waiting to happen. Pitifully inevitable.

    August 5, 2009 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  12. Kenyan Wonder Kid

    Of course the loony libs would whine about this silly accusation, since they themselves use every tool in their propogandist book. These are the same loony libs who never saw a conservative speaker at a university that they didn't shout down and physically disrupt and threaten through the organized actions of MoveOn.org, Code Pink and other fringe groups.

    In this case, the people and passions are real, and not manufactured. The loony libs feel threatened by this grassroots movement, and they have every reason to...

    August 5, 2009 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  13. carlos only smarter

    started with the hag palin and they haven't stopped ever since.........it is their mentality....................

    August 5, 2009 09:56 am at 9:56 am |
  14. Laura

    One problem with the Repubs "explanation": these people are NOT outraged about the health care plan. What they are protesting is that they are racists who say Obama is not a U.S. citizen. Nice try.

    August 5, 2009 09:57 am at 9:57 am |
  15. g

    i wonder how much the insurance company are paying these people maybe free health care for a year

    August 5, 2009 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  16. Peejay

    Are Republicans so out of touch that they think staged protests that prevent concerned Americans from voicing their concerns are a good thing?

    August 5, 2009 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  17. James Cunningham

    CNN, you know that this DNC information is not accurate or correct, because you have had reporters at these meetings. Yet you continue to rehash these false statements without challenging them nor give accurate coverage of the extent of these meetings, only looking for the most heated ones that will generate visual images to support the DNC claims. When are you going to return to honest and fair journalism and get off the advocacy role for your own political bias? Shame on you! Walter Cronkite must be turning over in his grave!

    August 5, 2009 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  18. Enlightened Voter

    Republicans support gun rights for all but not health care for all.
    Republicans claim to be pro life yet support the death penalty.
    Republicans claim to be the moral majority but will incite hatred.
    Republicans claim to be small gov yet tell you who you can and can't marry.
    Republicans claim to be christians yet will kill for their GOD.

    August 5, 2009 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  19. geecee

    I believe it. The loudmouth rabblerousers at these town hall meetings aren't there to get information or facts. They just want to disrupt and cause hate and discontent. That's been a Rethuglican tactic since Nixon's days. And unfortunately it works, so they keep it up. It's the usual "swiftboat" tactics, hate and fearmongering that the Rethugs love so much since they don't have real facts to oppose a program or policy. I hope the Democrats don't let them to this to the Health Care Reform.

    August 5, 2009 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  20. SwampyNoMore

    How many times can one say "government-run health care experiment" in a single statement? The GOP have obviously decided that this will be their new insidious catchphrase – talking of it being an experiment as if the first time anything new is done by a government isn't an experiment?

    August 5, 2009 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  21. concerned citizen

    I find the dmocratic response insulting and dispicable. This type of smarm and patronization is how the democrats alienate the middle class and will ultimately lose the next election for them.

    August 5, 2009 10:01 am at 10:01 am |
  22. jeremy.....Dallas...Texas

    Republicans hate americans. They deny us health care but take to wars. They deny us stimulus esp cranker funding but vote to rebuild Iraq for 10 trillions.....war and reconcstruction plus va budget and war injuries. We pay taxes but get nothing of it. Obama is right to spend at home.

    August 5, 2009 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  23. John

    It is absolutely absurd for the same group of people who support operations like Code Pink to assert that concerned constituents showing up at a town hall meeting to voice their concerns about a potentially disastrous health care bill are just a "manufactured mob." These citizens represent mainstream America - but if the DNC wants to dismiss their concerns, that will be just fine - the GOP will gladly address their concerns in 2010 and 2012.

    August 5, 2009 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  24. Mitch, St. Louis

    Instead of complaining about health care reform why don't we protest our great great grandchildren having to pay off the debt caused by these rediculous corporations and their greedy CEO's....let's protest the Federal Reserve and bring back the gold standard.

    August 5, 2009 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  25. Beth

    The Republicans are willing to do anything to keep the status quo. They are now behaving like disrutive school children who need behavioral interventions. They act out when they don't get what they want. Does anyone out there know how to develop a behavior plan for these unruly Republicans. Perhaps losing election after election will modify their behavior somehow. As far as positive reinforcement goes, these guys are too old for stickers and m&ms.

    August 5, 2009 10:03 am at 10:03 am |
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