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Shimkus and Costello say no to town hall forums

By Associated Press

Springfield, IL – Many Illinois congressional members are saying no thanks to holding open town hall meetings on overhauling the health care industry after many of the gatherings have turned rowdy.

Public forums led by federal lawmakers elsewhere -- including Missouri -- have drawn jeers and taunts, even arrests in many cases.

Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois says he won't be doing what he calls "sucker-punch town hall meetings" that he says have attracted "political theater."

Democratic Congressman Jerry Costello of Belleville and Republican Congressman John Shimkus of Collinsville say they prefer hearing from constituents by appointment or in small groups.