Roskam protest in Barrington centered on Medicaid, Medicare

Senior citizens who say they are concerned about U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam's potential support of Medicare and Medicaid cuts protested Tuesday afternoon at the politician's satellite office at Barrington village hall.

Roskam, a Wheaton Republican, was not at the village hall office, but about a dozen protesters with signs eventually went inside and left a letter requesting an in-person meeting with him.

Similar to other protests this year, the Roskam critics in Barrington contended he only has been meeting with 6th Congressional District residents who are perceived as friendly toward him.

Leaders from the Illinois Alliance for Retired Americans, Citizen Action/Illinois, Jane Addams Senior Caucus and other groups were represented Tuesday in Barrington. Some gave brief speeches as noon-hour traffic moved past them on Hough Street.

Downers Grove resident Kim Johnson, an Illinois Alliance for Retired Americans board member, said there are significant concerns about the potential for Medicare and Medicaid cuts in advance of the federal budget process that'll have Roskam's involvement next month.

"This will be especially devastating to older Americans and their families who rely on Medicaid to cover long-term costs, in other words, nursing homes," Johnson said of potential budget cuts.

Roskam pays $200 a month to Barrington for his small satellite office that's considered market value, according to his village lease that runs to Jan. 2, 2019. He's had the satellite space since 2013.

The congressman represents a district that includes parts of Cook, DuPage, Kane, Lake and McHenry. His main local office is in West Chicago.

Last week, about three dozen protesters waving banners and chanting gathered outside a Palatine banquet hall where Roskam gave a speech to members of several suburban chambers of commerce.

Roskam spokesman David Mork said the congressman is not looking to avoid anyone.

"He is happy to meet with any constituent, as he values those opportunities for informing his representative responsibility," Mork said.

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