Fearing angry protests, some GOP lawmakers have decided to skip public town-hall meetings. Others have mustered courage to face constituents in unpredictable settings, sometimes with uncomfortable results.
“I’ve never seen people as angry as they are right now. They’re angry at the whole system and evidencing that in their comments to me,” said Rep. Tim Johnson (R-Ill.), who has crisscrossed his district attending chicken dinners and state fairs.
“Being an incumbent in either chamber in either party is an unpopular brand. I’m trying to show people that I’m different, that I listen and don’t engage in a lot of partisanship,” said Johnson, who plans to redouble his efforts as a member of the Congressional Center Aisle Caucus to promote bipartisan cooperation in the fall.