Republicans

18,000 call in to Illinois GOP congressman's phone town hall

Rep. Peter Roskam, Republican of Illinois, speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington

Rep. Peter Roskam, Republican of Illinois, speaks on Capitol Hill in Washington  (AP)

About 18,000 callers participated in a telephone town hall hosted by U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam, a suburban Chicago Republican who has been criticized for canceling smaller in-person meetings and declining debates.

The Chicago Tribune reports some callers challenged the six-term congressman for not participating in traditional town halls.

Roskam abruptly canceled a smaller meeting with constituents this month to hear concerns about repealing the Affordable Care Act. Protesters have since shown up to his events. The League of Women Voters has also invited him to debates and town halls, which he has declined.

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Roskam said during Monday's call that the traditional town hall format isn't productive and frustrates participants.

Republicans elsewhere have encountered angry constituents at town halls, particularly with concerns about repealing former President Barack Obama's health care law.