Tea party freshman Rep. Chip Cravaack (R-MN) will possibly regret caving to constituent demand and having actual open and free town meetings when word of this gets around to some of his constituents.
[A] little overlooked fact about Chip Cravaack is that he worked as a pilot for the Northwest Airlines as recently as 2007 and being a pilot means that you are a member of a Union, thus receiving the benefits of union negotiated salaries, vacations and ultimately, disability payments.
Recent financial records released by Cravaack showed that he received $92,273 in 2010 from disability payments he received from Northwest. At this very same time Cravaack was receiving his checks, he was campaigning in Minnesota promising to end “big government,” and often using the usual Republican talking points of bashing unions.
Oh, and by the way, Chip Cravaack is also a veteran, which means that in addition to his government provided health care in Congress, he also gets benefits from the VA, allowing him to go to any government-owned Veteran’s Administration facility in the nation and receive what he and Teaparty calls, “socialized medicine.”
Of course, he also gets free health care from the Attending Physician of the United States Congress. Well, free to him. We, the taxpayers, are paying for that. For the record, it's fantastic that Cravaack had the opportunity to have workplace protections that are now helping in him out. Every worker should have that opportunity. And it's also great that served his country and he should get health care from it, as should all veterans.
But I kind of doubt that the tea party constituents who elected him are going to see it that way.