Leading Democrats Are Way Behind the Public on Health Care

By Jim Hightower | (Otherwords.org) | – –

60 percent of Americans support single payer health care. So why is the party leadership dragging its feet?

Good news, people — at last, congressional Democrats have gotten a clue, grown some spine, and are beginning to act like… well, like progressives.

In particular, a majority of Dems in the U.S. House are responding to the rising public demand that decent health care be treated as a right for everyone, rather than being rationed by profiteering insurance conglomerates.

Nearly 6 of 10 Dems in the House have now signed on to Rep. John Conyers’ “Medicare for All” bill, which is being carried in the Senate by Bernie Sanders — and 16 Democratic co-sponsors.

Hallelujah, progress!

But there are many speed bumps to overcome before the Democratic Party gets onto the moral high road of politics. Minority leader Nancy Pelosi, for one.

When the leader of House Democrats was asked recently if the party should make health care for all a major issue in Congress and in the 2018 elections, she replied with a flat “no.”

Pelosi says “the American people” aren’t ready for it. Unfortunately, I think she really means that health industry executives, lobbyists, and campaign donors aren’t ready.

Meanwhile, a good 60 percent of regular Americans are sure ready, telling pollsters that our government has a responsibility to ensure that everyone gets the care they need.

Let’s be blunt: When it comes to the fiery leadership that America’s grassroots people want and need, the Democratic Party establishment is weaker than Canadian hot sauce. When you’ve got 60 percent of rank-and-file congressional members ready to go, and 60 percent of the public is also ready to go — it’s time to go!

The national party’s “leadership” must get going on health care for all, or the leadership itself must go.

OtherWords columnist Jim Hightower is a radio commentator, writer, and public speaker. He’s also the editor of the populist newsletter, The Hightower Lowdown. Distributed by OtherWords.org.

Via OtherWords.org


Related video added by Juan Cole:

Majority Report with Sam Seder: “Why Single-Payer Is The ONLY Way To Reduce Healthcare Costs”

7 Responses

  1. Nearly 50% of general population (more than 50% of Dems) believe that they will get to keep their own current insurance (e.g., employer subsidized). Make it clear that will not be the case under single payer, and watch its support dwindle to true believers. Life is just not this simple.

    • Bob:

      You are correct on keeping ESI. It will not happen. Neither will a guarantee of controlling healthcare costs if it is not written into the law.

  2. I do not understand the refusal of US politicians to embrace free healthcare for all. Admittedly, I live in NZ where we have such a system funded from taxation. No person is left out. We get the prescription drugs we need for a small charge. We get doctors visits for a reasonable cost. What is so hard about this?

  3. The Dem machine is behind history and too stupid and selfish to catch up. A Russian effort involving Americans to sway the US election is hardly more treasonous than a major political party–Democrats to be exact–contradicting the will of the people.

  4. Time to form a new party without the Clinton Gang. Pelosi and Schumer use the same bait and switch tactics the Republicans have perfected to fool their base.
    Let the dead bury the dead: It is time to form a new party and let the Democratic hacks figure out how to pay all those IOU’s to the high rollers.

  5. The issue always has been, always has been, always has been the control of the rising cost of the commercial healthcare industry and the service for fees business model. Nothing in Conyers’s bill or any other bill speaks to that issue. It is just assumed the same as I have written multiple times on Angry Bear.

    For every simple sentence written on Conyers’s bill, there will be multiple pages detailing the sentence as written by Congress. Insurance is not your problem. The commercial healthcare industry and the service for fees business model is the problem.

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