Thursday, July 16, 2009

Bernie Sanders on Public Healthcare

I'm sure you've all seen this video of Senator Bernie Sanders by now but it's worth repeating. Bernie reminds John McCain and the other Republicans on the committee that the health care benefits offered by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs (the VA) is socialized medicine and that most people wanted more VA and not less VA medical care. He asked if any of them wanted to offer an amendment to eliminate the VA and of course none of them dared say a word. He then reminded the committee that Medicare is a single payer system. He asks them to go out and compare attitudes of the people toward Medicare, which does not throw people off the their plan for preexisting conditions or for getting sick the previous year, with the attitudes of people toward private insurance companies. Bernie concludes by reminding the committee and the Republicans that the function of what they are doing there is not to support the private health insurance companies but rather to try and provide the best quality health care to the American people, in the most cost effective way. He said that the United States Congress was the only institution in American that seems to think that the private health insurance companies should be playing the dominant role rather than the government. He's right. Far to many people in congress are trying to obstruct health care reform and trying desperately to stop the public option because they have been bought and paid for by the health insurance lobby. There is ample proof that the large majority of Americans want a public option and many want a single payer system. Yet, many in congress seem inclined to want to ignore the will of the people and bend to the demands of the insurance lobby. That tells me that they are afraid of the insurance lobby more than they are the American people. That's our fault and it's up to us to do something about it. We have to step up, make our voices heard and scare them into representing we the people rather than corporate board and lobbyists.

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