Democratic Blockbuster Event on Health Care Reform
SEIU - The Service Employees International Union headed by Andy Stern which includes health care workers had a heavy hand in this production for good reasons.
Seven democratic candidates, in my opinion, all of whom had good appearances, agreed this could be the single most important domestic issue of the campaign for President in '08.
I will be writing a lot more on this in days/weeks to come but here is my ranking for today's appearances in order of who impressed this writer and why.
1) Sen. Chris Dodd for stating correctly that the healthcare issue should not be "stovepiped". Jobs and the general economy have more to do with health care than the medical care industry. He is correct! He also used the word "shame" as it relates to our current system.
2) Cong. Dennis Kucinich for showing the most political backbone for making a passionate moral case for single-payer.
3) Sen. Hillary Clinton for showing great knowledge and passion on the health care issue which she wrestled with in 93/94. Hillary hit a home run today!
4) Former Sen.John Edwards who is the ONLY candidate who has put forth a recent very specific plan (The Conyers/Kucinich bill H.R. 676 is many years old)and hence sets a mark for others. He used the term "mandatory prevention"
5) Gov. Bill Richardson who also did well and talked about a portable "Hero's Health Card" for our Veterans to use anywhere geographically in the Health Care system. (bravo!) As a governor Richardson kept referring to shared financial responsibilities between the Federal Government and the States. He, like others, mentioned the worthy idea of school based health clinics. Prevention starts early.
6) Former Sen. Mike Gravel- Promoted a voucher system but correctly pointed out that we should "not trust our leaders" who are bankrupting this nation over the last 50 years. So "let the people decide" says Gravel. He also spoke about 77 million baby boomers who are hitting retirement age over next 5 years and their voice being heard.
7) Sen.Barak Obama was also good but the least impressive candidate today in my opinion because considering his strong polling numbers HE DOES NOT YET HAVE A HEALTH CARE PLAN! Maybe this relates to his short tenure in federal office which could be his general soft underbelly on all issues? (I'm still watching his smoking habit too). His says his plan will be on his website within 4-6 weeks?
I was genuinely impressed with all seven. The Republican candidates were invited to today's forum but none accepted. Nor are any of their plans remotely worth considering except perhaps "Republicrat" Arnold Schwarzeneger, Gov. of California, who is not running (actually cannot run) for U.S President.
Bravo to the DEMS who stepped up to the plate today on Health Care- Y'all done well
But where was my candidate? -Al Gore?
Dr. Rick Lippin