Earlier, a video of Barbara Boxer dismissed protesters at town-hall meetings as obvious fakes because, as Boxer explained, they’re too well-dressed to be sincerely angry about health care. The College Politico has an answer in this clip from Steny Hoyer’s attempt to pontificate to a hostile and casually-attired crowd. The older voters in this row wear shorts, t-shirts, and apparently Democratic Party registration cards:
The gentleman with the obviously-expensive cap gets the zinger of the day by challenging Hoyer on how Congress could try to force the takeover of the American health-care industry in roughly a fifth of the time it took Barack Obama to pick out a dog for his kids. Instead of answering, Hoyer goes into a long dissertation about the Erie Canal, and how naysayers probably existed back then as well.
The Erie Canal? That’s the best Hoyer can do? The canal was built in 1825. Maybe Hoyer remembers it personally, but for voters everywhere and especially the ones arrayed in front of him in this clip, it’s about as relevant as the Bering ice bridge. Sticking with that, though, the Erie Canal project was just that — a project with a start, a middle, and an end. The federal government didn’t have anything to do with the Erie Canal, either; it was built by the state of New York after President Thomas Jefferson rejected the idea as “little short of madness”. It initially cost $7 million, and paid off well — for the state of New York.
Why would Hoyer expect people in Maryland to feel affectionate about a canal that has nothing to do with them? If this is the best example Hoyer can dredge to the surface, his Maryland voters may get an eerie feeling that Hoyer doesn’t intend at all.
TCP has a channel dedicated to videos of town-hall protests here.