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Jonathan Bernstein

Why Republicans Can't Ignore Angry Voters

If conservatives are told protests are fake, then they will expect swift passage of their agenda without compromise.
Where's the beef?

Where's the beef?

Photographer: Jeff Curry/Getty Images

Republican members of Congress are feeling a bit under siege right now. Their office phones won't stop ringing, and their town hall meetings are mobbed by people angry about health care, the travel ban, various Donald Trump cabinet officials, and more. 

Their reaction? Utah Republican Jason Chaffetz said the huge turnout at his town hall meeting last week was filled with people shipped in from other states -- "more of a paid attempt to bully and intimidate" than genuine constituent sentiment. This echoes what Trump himself tweeted earlier in February: