mercredi 16 décembre 2009

Howard Dean says vote "no" on the Lieberman Bill

"There's no cost control of any kind. You're going to be forced to buy health insurance from a company that's gonna take, on average, 27% of your money so they can pay CEOs 20 million dollars a year, and so they can have return on equity for their shareholders, and there's no choice about that; if you don't buy that insurance you gonna get a fine. This is a bill that was funda,entally written by staffers who are friendly to the insurance industry, held up, so it was friendly to the insurance industry by senators who take a lot of money from the insurance industry, and it is not health care reform. I think it is too bad that it has come to this."

On passage of this bill, vote yes or no?

"No, absolutely not. You cannot vote for a bill like this in good conscience. It costs too much money, it isn't health care reform, it's not even insurance reform. Take for ex this, there's a lot of talk about people who have pre-exsiting conditions can get health insurance. Well, not exactly. The fine print in the senate says, the healthcare industry gets to charge you three times as much if you are older as if you are younger, and they get to write the rules. That's in the senate bill. This bill is no longer reform."

After that no vote, strategically, where would you say the Democrats should go?

"I don't think this will happen, if it were me I'd kill the bill all entirely and have the house start reconciliation, which is what they should have done in the first place. So, to be held up by four senators, a minority of forty, who are totally uncooperative, which is the Republicans, and then four senators who are beholden to the insurance industry I think is wrong, but that's what's happend. So, the other thing you could do is pas the good stuff, pass the exchanges, pass the money for the prevention wellness, pass the community health care center money in a small bill, don't run our children into debt and come back and do this two years later. I disagree with the administration when they say a president won't take this on for another twenty years.

We're in crisis here, this bill I think is more likely to make the crisis worse than it is better because it is so expensive. We can come back with a new congress -- which unfortunately as a result of all this will have fewer Democrats, but it'll still have a Democratic majorities -- we can come back wuth a new congress and we could pass a bill, which we had on the senate floor last week, that would insure people faster, even though it is delayed by a year and a half, than the bill that's going to be passed in the senate."

Keep on fighting. Keep on fighting for real health care reform, he says.

Why not pass a really incremental bill, in other words, one with the small and good stuff and build the legislative coalition required to pass the bigger stuff -- preexisting conditions, a real public option -- in the next phase of legislation.

Who said it had to happen now? Who said that making President Obama go down in history is more important than getting the right legislation passed? We didn't start out Social Security and Medicaid in the hopes of making FDR or LBJ heroes of history. We didn't worry about their legacies. We legislated with intelligence and heart according to need and moral courage for the benefit of our society.

Who says that doing it this way won't send President Obama down in history as a great American president?

Perhaps today we are making the electoral progress necessary to obtain the legislative representation that is necessary to pass the true health care reform so necessary to our country and it's citizens, to the benefit of everyone, and not just the insurance companies.

Maybe we need to tend to first things first, as we put together a coalition of representatives like Weiner, Grayson, Sanders, and a long list of others who are ready to work to do what's right.

Feel free to share your opinion.
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