POLITICO – Harper holds up anti-health care bill sign during vote

Later in the day, Republicans encouraged the protesters.

As the House was voting on an unrelated bill, Republican Reps. Tom Latham of Iowa, Jo Ann Emerson of Missouri, Brett Guthrie of Kentucky and Gregg Harper of Mississippi stood on south balcony off the House floor — an area known informally as “the beach” — holding pieces of paper that read “kill the bill” to a group of cheering protesters. Some Republican lawmakers waved a “Don’t Tread on Me” flag from the balcony, causing the crowd to go wild.

Later in the day, Reps. Steve King, Paul Ryan and others gave the crowd an Evita’s welcome, before gathering together to spell out a “Kill the bill” with individual letter signs. Rep. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) stood watching off to the side.

Lawmakers also came down to the crowd, too. Anthony Weiner was watching near the House entrance. “These people are very civil when you talk to them one on one,” he said, “but when they get together, it’s mob rule.”

Rep Michael Turner (R-Ohio) walked by, carrying a sign saying, “I’m voting no!” Trent Franks, a Republican of Arizona and Pete Olson, a Republican of Texas, came down to thank the tea partiers for their support.

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3/22/10