Hey, great: Health care town brawls are being revived — and in Staten Island! “This is the kind of thing that the whole Tea Party movement is geared around,” says Frank Santarpia, an organizer for the Staten Island Tea Party, about Monday’s event, sponsored by Congressman Michael McMahon at the Petrides Educational Complex on Ocean Terrace. “There’s a lot of buzz on the Island. It’s going to be well attended.” No doubt: Santarpia described an earlier health care event at the Assumption Senior Center in New Brighton thus: “Despite a withering verbal assault in between the calling of N37 and B15 (BINGO!) our fearless leader [McMahon] stuck to his principles — no matter how much they threatened, cajoled, browbeat and bribed, he would not take a stand… It’s time to come out of hiding and face your constituents, Congressman. Leave the ‘Where’s Waldo’ games to the kids.”
So you can see he’s loaded for bear, and given the political temper and approach to interpersonal relations traditional in the Forgotten Borough, he should be able to get up a posse that will exceed in size and fervor the one that brought some pepper to a previous Staten Island town brawl. And the more liberal Citizen Action of New York is publicizing the meeting to its own members, so they’ll have someone to fight. No biting this time, fellas!
This article from the Village Voice Archive was posted on October 1, 2009