Republican members of Congress are facing angry, pro-Affordable Care Act (ACA) crowds at town halls and constituent meetings across the country. One party official drew a particularly harsh response when he brought up a debunked myth against the law—“death panels.”
CNN caught the exchange on camera at a town hall hosted by U.S. Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Florida. It wasn’t Bilirakis who brought it up, however, but Bill Akins, the chairman of the Pasco County Republican Party.
“There is a provision in there that anyone over the age of 74 has to go before what is effectively a death panel,” Akins said, which was promptly met with boos and shouts of “liar!” from the audience.
Bilirakis later tried to explain that Akins was referring to the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), a cost-cutting panel which was falsely labeled in 2009 as a means for rationing care. The board has been never been set up, with Republicans in Congress successfully stripping it of funding year after year since the ACA became law.
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