Abortion language troubles both sides: Nelson clears way for vote on health care

I’ve not been following this because I believe the health care bill will be decided by a conference committee meeting in a┬ásmoke filled room. But today Senator Ben Nelson became the 60th vote to move the ball down the court.

Did Nelson use abortion? I don’t know but I found this statement in the Washington Post troubling:

Nelson also secured favors for his home state and to benefit different factions of the health-insurance industry.

The health bill is pretty unpopular and may lead to a 2010 shift in the Congress. I guess I should say, I hope it does.

Not-for-profit co-ops may replace public option in health care reform

The Associated Press has a good summary of the political landscape on healthcare reform today.

During the 1993 Clinton Health Care debates, co-ops were floated as an option. While this may seem like a compromise, such co-ops are not a panacea. I might support them if the amount of administrative costs were capped and they were not allowed to lobby legislators (think about Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac).

Such an option could get us closer to public health clinics where health care would be free or dramatically low in cost. Co-ops should be open to such an arrangement since such care can be coordinated well and the incentive is good care and not profit margin.

However, I maintain that unless tort reform is on the table, it matters little whether we have non-profits or insurance companies or the government. Physicians will still practice defensively and run up costs. Don’t hear me say tort reform will fix the system but without it, I doubt the current fixes will help as much.

Health care reform controversy comes to Grove City

Yesterday, Grove City got involved.

Americans for Prosperity rolled through town collecting signatures on a petition opposing more government control of health care.

I wrote about the visit at World Magazine, just up today. Actually, I wrote the article sitting in the Four Star Pizza. They’re all wireless and tasty in there.

gc

Unpaid protester

GC crowd

People waiting to sign the petition

AFP Bus

Americans for Prosperity bus

Cooking up an easy way to make a big impression on health care reform

How to be organized without really looking organized.

This came today:

Friend —

All throughout August, our members of Congress are back in town. Insurance companies and partisan attack groups are stirring up fear with false rumors about the President’s plan, and it’s extremely important that folks like you speak up now.

So we’ve cooked up an easy, powerful way for you to make a big impression: Office Visits for Health Reform.

All this week, OFA members like you will be stopping by local congressional offices to show our support for insurance reform. You can have a quick conversation with the local staff, tell your personal story, or even just drop off a customized flyer and say that reform matters to you.

We’ll provide everything you need: the address, phone number, and open hours for the office, information about how the health care crisis affects your state for you to drop off (with the option of adding your personal story), and a step-by-step guide for your visit.

According to our records, you live near Sen. Arlen Specter’s office in Pittsburgh, PA.

Sign up now to visit Sen. Arlen Specter’s office in Pittsburgh this week.

(Not your representative, or think there might be another office that’s easier for you to get to? Click here to find a different office.)

As you’ve probably seen in the news, special interest attack groups are stirring up partisan mobs with lies about health reform, and it’s getting ugly. Across the country, members of Congress who support reform are being shouted down, physically assaulted, hung in effigy, and receiving death threats. We can’t let extremists hijack this debate, or confuse Congress about where the people stand.

Office Visits for Health Reform are our chance to show that the vast majority of American voters know that the cost of inaction is too high to bear, and strongly support passing health reform in 2009.

Don’t worry if you’ve never done anything like this before. The congressional staff is there to listen, and your opinion as a constituent matters a lot. And if you bring a friend, you’ll have more fun and make an even greater impact.

Click below to sign up for an Office Visit for Health Reform:

http://my.barackobama.com/OfficeVisit

Wherever you live, these visits matter: Many representatives are pushing hard toward reform, and they are taking a lot of heat from special interests. They deserve our thanks and need our support to continue the fight. But those who are still putting insurance companies and partisan point-scoring ahead of their constituents must know that voters are watching — and that we expect better.

Earlier this week, the President wrote that “this is the moment our movement was built for” and asked us all to commit to join at least one event this month. This is the way to answer that call, and rise to the challenge of this moment together.

Thank you for going the extra mile when it matters the most,

Mitch

Mitch Stewart

Director

Organizing for America

When people opposed to the President’s health care reform plan show up to town hall meetings, they are minions of big insurance. When his supporters show up, they are constituents.

Please be sure to send this post to [email protected]

Cutting Medicare Advantage is not the change we need

I have a family member with a Medicare Advantage plan and am very well aware of how it works. Compared to what I know about basic Medicare, I think advantage is an accurate description. When I read that President Obama believes these plans are helpful only to the insurance companies, I have to disagree.

Disagreed so much I wrote an article about it which has been published several places, including here.