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National Journal: Lawmakers. Town Halls. Advocacy-Group Rhetoric. It Must Be August.

National Journal - August 14, 2013

Many advocacy groups agitate at town-hall meetings and other gatherings, hoping that a well-placed question can generate a firestorm online. For the groups, the tactic is about sharpening their attacks and being aggressive, said Americans United for Change spokeswoman Lauren Weiner.

The group already scored once this summer, when Leslie Boyd of Ashville, N.C., whose son had trouble getting insurance because of a preexisting condition and who later died of cancer, confronted Rep. Patrick McHenry, R-N.C., about his opposition to certain provisions of the Affordable Care Act. The questioning was caught on video and was promoted online.

"It's not necessarily about embarrassing them but asking them very pointed questions, [telling them,] 'You have to answer for these positions,' " Weiner said.