A nationwide bus tour aimed at preventing large cuts in government programs made a stop in La Crosse on Saturday.
The group Courage for America joined with Opportunity Wisconsin during an event at Red Cloud Park on La Crosse’s north side, to call on Congress to preserve programs such as Social Security and Medicare. Organizers of the tour oppose efforts, primarily by Republicans in the House, to make cuts in the programs, or to default on the nation’s debts.
The tour began last month in California, in the district of House Speaker Kevin McCarthy. It has made stops in 13 Congressional districts held by Republicans from coast to coast. The La Crosse stop, in Wisconsin’s 3rd District represented by Derrick Van Orden, was the last one before the “Back Off Our Benefits” bus reaches Washington, D.C.
Democratic State Senator Brad Pfaff was among the local residents who spoke at the La Crosse press conference. Pfaff called it “irresponsible” for Congress to put medical assistance programs at risk, and he said Wisconsin should join most other states in accepting federal dollars for Medicaid.
Also speaking at the event was La Crosse resident Tina Pohlman, who is a lupus patient and says she needs Medicaid assistance. Pohlman wants Congress to strengthen government medical programs, instead of trying to cut them.