THE TREATMENT AUGUST 5, 2009
Robert Borosage, co-director of the Campaign for America's Future, has a new column up at Huffington Post that makes the point liberals should be making:
It is time to go all in to support comprehensive health care reform. The stakes have gotten prohibitive. Republicans have essentially bet the House on it. Obama, for all intents and purposes, has wagered the White House agenda. The insurance and drug companies are pouring in dough. This month will be telling. The debate in congressional districts across the country in August will go far in determining what kind of reform we get--or whether we get any reform at all. ...
Every American has a direct stake in this debate. Every citizen faced with soaring health care bills, every one of the 14,000 who lose their health insurance each day, every one of the millions frozen in jobs for fear of losing health insurance, every family that faces bankruptcy because someone got sick, every one denied coverage or cut off of coverage because he or she fell sick, every parent losing sleep over a child entering the workforce without insurance, every senior gouged by unconscionable prescription drug prices, every worker who simply can't afford adequate coverage for her or his family. If the insurance industry and the Republican right manage once more to frustrate reform, all of us will pay part of the price.
What many of us would favor--a system of government funded insurance with many alternative plans, a sort of Medicare for all--is not on the table, to the dismay of single payer advocates. But reforms now under consideration include major changes--all of which have passed through Senate and House committees--that could make a dramatic difference in people's lives, and begin to mend our broken system.
By the way, in the course of his argument, he talks about the need for "real reform." That's not a bad rallying cry. Or maybe it should be "Real Reform, Real Coverage"--something that emphasizes the importance of protecting people who already have insurance.
Or maybe not. As I've said before, there's a reason I do policy analysis and not political consulting. (Several reasons, actually.) In any event, it's good to see the left engaging and focusing in this way.