GREEN BAY - Organizers said about 1,000 people lined the east side ofPackerland Drive Thursday morning to protest President Obama's stopin Green Bay. Stretching four blocks long, the protest parkeditself along the motorcade route between Austin Straubel Airportand Green Bay Southwest High School.
Most of the protestors were part of a grassroots movement thatcalls itself "The Party of Know." Jerry Bader, a conservative talkshow host on WTAG 1360, helped organize the rally. Most protestorssaid their purpose Thursday was to let President Obama know justexactly how they feel about a government backed health caresystem.
"It doesn't work," Dawn Papapetru said. Papapetru said she feelsan obligation to speak out. She now lives in Green Bay but was bornand raised in Canada, a country that provides universal health carefor its citizens.
"I know what the free health system is all about. It's wrong.Taxes will go up, gas will go up and the lines get longer inhospitals," Papapetru said.
President Obama has said he wants to model American health carereform after the Canadian system. The plan is designed to extendhealth care coverage to millions of uninsured Americans by offeringa government backed health insurance option.
"The government has no need to get involved in my healthdecisions. I don't want a government board telling me when and howand if I'm going to get health care," Peter Soransen, of De Pere,said. Soransen was one of the hundreds of people who showed uphoping to have his voice heard.
He worries government backed health care would increaseinsurance costs for everyone.
"I had to take off work to do this but freedom isn't free,"Soransen said.
While most of the protestors lined Packerland Drive south of theschool, a small group of anti-abortion activists gathered near thenorthside of Southwest High.
"When doctors are supposed to provide abortions up to ninemonths pregnancy and my tax dollars pay for it, that's part of hishealth plan and I don't agree with it," Jenny Lowery, one of theanti-abortion activists, said.
As President Obama's motorcade passed down Packerland Drive,protestors only had a few moments to express their feelings. Buttheir opposition to his health care plan was loud and clear. Manypeople booed and offered a thumbs down.
The protest broke up quickly after the President's arrival atSouthwest High School. Police tell us no one was arrested.
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