Blanche Lincoln vs America
Looks kind of Republican, huh?
Yesterday both John Amato and Digby gave beautiful explanations for why Blue America is asking our community to help us with a cable TV ad buy in Arkansas, the home of
One of them, Blanche Lincoln, WalMart's primary representative in the House of Lords, is up for re-election next year. She's normally very Republican-oriented anyway but in the run-up to the election she thinks she has to go on a jihad against working families. She was one of the first Democrats to assure the Chamber of Commerce that she would join the GOP filibuster of Employee Free Choice. She got away with that so now she's making it clear that she will oppose a workable public option that might "hurt" Insurance companies' profits. She takes a tremendous amount of money from the Medical-Industrial Complex and from the insurance industry. They've donated almost $2 million to her political career so far-- and their donations are accelerating. The Arkansas Times has it broken down even finer:
In Lincoln’s case, the skepticism is based on campaign contributions she has received from health insurance industry, which is decidedly cool to competition from government-managed plans. Over the past 20 years she has received $181,899 from health insurance companies, a total that is 19th highest in the chamber, according to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. Some of that reflects her two terms in the House from January 1993 to January 1997.
For her 2010 campaign for a third Senate term, she has received $14,500 so far, the second highest of any senator up for re-election next year.
Blanche Lincoln is the polar opposite of Bernie Sanders (I-VT). Bernie-- along with a tiny handful of dedicated members of the Senate, Jeff Merkley, Dick Durbin, Sheldon Whitehouse, Jack Reed, Sherrod Brown-- truly are Tribunes of the People. Lincoln and most of the Senate are grubby businesspeople shilling for corporations that finance their careers. Watch Bernie Sanders succinctly explain the real health care problem; oddly, he never mentions the problem of protecting Insurance giants' bottom lines. He talks about what American working families need. Watch it and sign his petition.
• 46 million Americans are currently without health insurance;
• 60 million Americans, both insured and uninsured, have inadequate access to primary care due to a shortage of physicians and other health service providers in their community;
• 100 million Americans have no insurance to cover dental needs;
• 116 million adults, nearly two-thirds of all non-seniors, struggled to pay medical bills, went without needed care because of cost, were uninsured for a time, or were underinsured in the last year;
• The United States spends $2.3 trillion each year on health care, 16 percent of its Gross Domestic Product;
• Americans spend $7,129 per person on health care, 50 percent more than other industrialized countries, including those with universal care;
• The U.S. does not get what it pays for. We rank among the lowest in the health outcome rankings of developed countries, and on several major indices rank below some third-world nations;
• The number of health insurance industry bureaucrats has grown at 25 times the growth of physicians in the past 30 years;
• In 2006, the six largest insurance companies made $11 billion in profits even after paying for direct health care costs, administrative costs and marketing costs.
• Medicare has administrative costs far lower than any private health insurance plan;
• The potential savings on health insurance paperwork, more than $350 billion per year, is enough to provide comprehensive coverage to every uninsured American;
• Only a single-payer Medicare-for-all plan can realize these enormous savings and provide comprehensive and affordable health care to every citizen.
And then there are the Republicans and their allies like Blanche Lincoln, Joe Lieberman, Mary Landrieu and Ben Nelson, putative Democrats who have been bought off by the Insurance Industry and the Medical-Industrial Complex to sabotage any chance for real health care reform. We should be as brave and courageous as the Iranians. Or at least, think about donating some money-- and even $5 or $10 helps-- to our action to take our case to the airwaves of various senators around the country, starting in Arkansas. The alternative is the Republican health care plan: "incentives for healthy living, protection for doctors against malpractice lawsuits and tax breaks to encourage small businesses to offer insurance to their workers."
Your choice. Get involved, And please help us make sure Blanche knows that Americans are sick and tired and not willing to take it anymore. Donate here.
Why is Kathleen Sibelius the Secretary of Health and Human Services instead of Howard Dean? Is Obama a friend of the people's or a friend of corporate interests acting like a friend of the people's? Just asking.