Walorski, meanwhile, doubled down on her refusal to give in during an interview Friday with The Tribune, and she declined to say whether she would attend the event. Walorski said she maintains an "open door" policy at her local staff offices and would rather meet with individuals and small groups.
"What we've done is what we're going to continue to do," Walorski said when asked why she doesn't schedule town halls, having had only one, in 2013, since taking office. "This is what we've been doing for five years. It's a lot better use of time to have productive dialogue and not have supercharged political rhetoric."
But instead of the billboards, the groups have decided to give the money to the
"They weren't sure the message they wanted to get across would work for a billboard," Critchlow said. "They wanted to put more information out there ... and they thought TV spots would be seen by more people."
As of late Friday, 47 people had donated a combined
"We're still hoping she will see the light and realize this is the right thing to do and she will do her job," MacLaughlin said. "If she doesn't, it's still a good opportunity to make sure that everybody has good information about the Affordable Care Act."
MacLaughlin said her family is covered by Notre Dame's employer health plan, but as a breast cancer survivor, she wants to preserve the ACA provisions that guarantee access to health insurance for people with pre-existing conditions, and that prohibit policies that cap lifetime benefits.
MacLaughlin collected 1,100 petition signatures calling on Walorski to have a town hall over health insurance reform, and presented them to Walorski's office
MacLaughlin said she was in a group with five other people who were given 15 minutes, combined, to talk. She was able to make it there during her lunch hour but she said many people don't have jobs that are as flexible.
"Very small groups of people were let in, they were hand-selected and it happened behind closed doors," she said. "That does not give her an accurate feel for what the people in the community are experiencing."
Introduced Monday, the Republican-crafted American Health Care Act would slash the ACA's
At the same time, it would preserve popular ACA provisions allowing adult children to stay on their parents' health insurance plan until age 26 and prohibiting insurers from charging people with pre-existing medical conditions more for coverage as long as they don't let their insurance lapse.
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