DSA on the Health Care Struggle

DSA is joining with the AFL-CIO on Wednesday January 13th to call members of the House of Representatives to urge them to stand up for provisions in the House health care bill that are superior to the deeply flawed Senate Bill. We also urge members to call the White House, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi with the same message.

The message of this call-in day is that we must have a health care bill that:

  • Does not tax health care benefits.
  • Requires employers to pay their fair share.
  • Controls health care costs—and the best way to do that is by creating a public health care insurance plan option.

Additionally we encourage members to add that the bill should also:

  • Make health insurance affordable for more presently uninsured individuals by better subsidizing premium costs
  • Allow for state experimentation in providing health care for all, including state single-payer systems that could access Medicare and Medicaid funds to help finance single-payer and
  • Requires health insurance plans to cover comprehensive reproductive services, including abortion.

To participate in the call-in day simply call the Capitol switchboard at 202-224-3121 and ask for you representative. The Capitol switchboard can also connect you to Senator Reid and Speaker Pelosi. You can also visit the AFL-CIO mobilization center before the 13th and pledge to make the call on Wednesday. They will send you an email reminder with a toll-free number. You can use the White House comment line to  convey a message to the President: 202- 456-1111.   If you are unable to call on Wednesday, please make the calls as soon as possible.

If you want to look up your representative’s information you can check the House web site.

In solidarity,

Frank Llewellyn

National Director

P.S. DSA recognizes that the inadequate health care reform that may pass Congress in early February will fail to rein in the power of the health insurance industry. But it will expand health care coverage to over 30 million Americans, create health “exchanges” through which those who lack secure workplace coverage can gain group-insurance discount plans, and will reduce insurers’ ability to discriminate against the sick and those with pre-existing conditions. Between now and the final vote, DSA urges its locals and members to join the phone-ins, E-mail campaigns, lobby days, and demonstrations that feminist organizations, labor unions, MoveOn, PDA, Health Care for America Now (HCAN), and other progressive groups are organizing to improve the final bill.

But DSA also understands that regardless of whatever legislation may pass, millions of Americans (including millions of undocumented immigrants who provide meaningful labor that benefits all of us) will still not have health insurance coverage and that millions more will still be paying too much for inadequate coverage. Thus, the fight for a universal health care system that provides affordable, high-quality health care coverage for all residents of the United States will continue. To win this fight we must build a stronger progressive coalition capable of eliminating the corporate health care industry’s inordinate influence over electoral politics and the legislative process.

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