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Monday, September 27, 2010

6-Months On

And while many conservatives around the country today are talking about how, after 6 months, Healthcare Reform is continuing to destroy our nation. From talk radio to Sarah Palin's ghost-written Facebook page, all the old memes are new again. From "death panel", to "rationing", on down to doctors leaving their practices en masses, conservatives are marking this anniversary with the same noise we knew they would.

But they are drowning out the voices of those they claim to be speaking for.

President Barack Obama's health care overhaul has divided the nation, and Republicans believe their call for repeal will help them win elections in November. But the picture's not that clear-cut.

A new AP poll finds that Americans who think the law should have done more outnumber those who think the government should stay out of health care by 2-to-1.

"I was disappointed that it didn't provide universal coverage," said Bronwyn Bleakley, 35, a biology professor from Easton, Mass.

More than 30 million people would gain coverage in 2019 when the law is fully phased in, but another 20 million or so would remain uninsured. Bleakley, who was uninsured early in her career, views the overhaul as a work in progress.

The poll found that about four in 10 adults think the new law did not go far enough to change the health care system, regardless of whether they support the law, oppose it or remain neutral. On the other side, about one in five say they oppose the law because they think the federal government should not be involved in health care at all.

This is the category that I find myself in: Healthcare reform didn't do enough.

From the start, I was a proponent of the Single Payer system, and continue to be that way. At the least, the debate should have started there and come down to Public Option. But, when it's 4th down on the 5 yard line, count on just enough Democrats to screw around and not hear the audible and let the opposition get control of the ball.

And while listening to The Diane Rehm Show on NPR this morning, the guest host took a call from a gentleman that is not only on Medicare, but is - at least from his description of it - the proprietor of a "small business". From the lead-up to his question, I was getting the feeling that he was about to unleash a tirade of conservative talking points about how reform is killing his bottom line and how he's going to have to fire employees just so he can afford to provide insurance.

Boy, was I wrong.

After listening to him relate about how reform has had a positive effect on his community, he mentioned that it didn't go far enough, in that it should be able to break up large, monopolistic, providers that control massive areas of the United States, thereby being able to literally price people out of the market. This was not the response I was expecting from this person. And I think the AP story shows that this man is not alone.

Are we going to hear from Palin's show-author on this? How about Beck, Limbaugh, or the conservative media elites at Fox? The people have spoken. These are people you claim to represent. As for me, I anticipate silence from them.

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