From the Wall Street Journal:
The health-insurance industry is sending thousands of its employees to town-hall meetings and other forums during Congress’s August recess to try to counter a tide of criticism directed at the insurers and remain a player — and not an outsider — in the debate over the future of the health-care system.
Among the throngs of Americans crowding the sessions across the country, the industry employees come armed with talking points about the need for bipartisan legislation and the unintended consequences of a government-run health plan to compete with private insurers.
But unlike the angry crowds shouting at politicians to keep government out of their health care, the insurance industry supporters have garnered little attention, and that’s partly by design.
A “Town Hall Tips” memo written by America’s Health Insurance Plans, or AHIP, the industry’s chief lobby, warns people attending the meetings to expect harsh criticism directed at health-plan employees. Stay calm and don’t yell at members of Congress, the memo advises. “It is important not to take the bait,” it cautions.