" On behalf of Sasha and Malia "
President Pardons WH Turkey
Keith Olbermann's "Countdown" Producer
Attends Free Health Care Clinic
" It Was Hard To Believe I was In America ! "
One of the free health clinics launched due to the generosity of "Countdown" viewers took place over the weekend in New Orleans.
While Keith Olbermann was unable to attend himself due to his father's illness, "Countdown" producer Rich Stockwell — who Olbermann credited on air as the brains behind the drive to raise money for the clinics — did attend, and he wrote an essay for MSNBC.com about his experience.
In the essay, Stockwell relays several stories of patients who came to Saturday's clinic: the 50-year-old woman with stage four breast cancer whose cancer was likely diagnosed so late because she didn't have insurance; the nurse who holds down two part-time jobs but can't work enough hours to qualify for medical benefits; the woman sent to the hospital with a 220/180 blood pressure who didn't know why she wasn't feeling well.
"After watching for hours as the patients moved through the clinic, it was hard to believe that I was in America," Stockwell wrote. "Health reform is not about Democrats or Republicans or who can score political points for the next election, it's about people. It's about fairness and justice in a system that knows none. I'd defy even the most hardened capitalist-loving-conservative to do what I did on Saturday and continue to pretend that the system in place right now is working....There are no words that can accurately describe the quiet desperation on the faces of the patients. Every single one I spoke to, and every one I heard talking with doctors, expressed their gratitude for the event and wished that they were held more often."
Stockwell noted that the last time the media convened in the New Orleans convention center was to cover Hurricane Katrina; this time, however, "we were there to cover a man-made disaster of even larger proportions," he wrote.
Read his full essay at MSNBC.com or watch Olbermann's segment on the New Orleans clinic below:
But there's another alternative, according to Martin Paone. Paone, who served as a Democratic Senate floor staffer for 29 years, has been advising Democrats as they craft their legislative strategy. He proposes that Democrats try to get 60 votes to waive the Byrd Rule -- which would then allow the inclusion of those non-budget-related provision in one bill that would require only 51 votes for final passage.So, as the media continues their daily rant of how imperative it is that EVERY Democratic Senator vote yes on the health care bill remember one FACT that they seem to want to hide from We The People. There IS a way for the Senate to get the bill passed WITHOUT 60 votes...without Traitor Joe...without Olympia Snowe...without Mary Landrieu...making them absolutely meaningless in the debate.
What's the advantage? And why would any senator who opposes the entire bill vote for such a waiver? The answer can be found in the specific proposals that would be in violation of the Byrd Rule. Mostly, those would include reforms to the way the insurance industry operates -- for example, a ban on using preexisting conditions to deny coverage, or a law that insurance companies can't drop a client just because they get sick.
Those are wildly popular reforms. Getting 60 votes to support those policies is much easier than getting 60 for a public health insurance option, which Republicans and some conservative Democrats oppose.
Conservative senators such as Mary Landrieu (D-La.), Ben Nelson (D-Neb.) or Olympia Snowe (R-Maine) could, in voting for a Byrd Rule waiver, put themselves on the record as being in support of popular insurance industry reforms, while still opposing final passage of the bill -- a political strategy that may be appealing to them.
"It will provide more security and stability to those who have health insurance. It will provide insurance to those who don’t. And it will lower the cost of health care for our families, our businesses, and our government"
-President Barack Obama
More Stability and Security
Quality, Affordable Choices for All Americans
Reins In the Cost of Health Care for Our Families, Our Businesses, and Our Government
Civil Rights Groups Open
K Street Office
in Final Health Care Push
By Krissah Thompson Washington Post
After some small-scale, disjointed efforts to push for health care reform, civil rights groups are renting temporary office space on K Street and combining their efforts to run an operations center with the sole goal of lobbying on health care policy.
The office will be run by staffers from the National Urban League, the NAACP and the Black Leadership Forum. Over the next two weeks, they will coordinate rallies in 10 cities, run a phone bank where volunteers will pepper members of Congress with calls and keep up with the latest developments in the debate.
The groups are calling the effort a "war room" and plan to staff it long hours each day, creating a central hub for the civil rights groups to share ideas and staff resources. The voices of minorities, who are disproportionately represented among the poor and uninsured and could benefit the most from reform -- and who also are more likely than others to have chronic illnesses such as diabetes -- have been a small part of the contentious health care debate.Marc Morial, president of the National Urban League, said the groups have been working behind the scenes but are trying to push to the front in the final stretch.
(In Hiatus) Welcome to the OFFICIAL SITE for Blacks4Barack !...a multi-racial, net/grassroots organization est. in Feb. 2007 to increase support for Barack Obama for President. Recognized nationwide Greg Jones (Cleveland, Ohio) is National Director. ALSO ! You can listen to archives of the Obama TALK RADIO show NOTHING BUT THE TRUTH with Greg Jones. Scroll down to visit our one-of-a-kind 'Memory Lane' below 4 the World's Most COMPLETE review of Historic Campaign '08 and More!
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