Greens call Sen. Clinton's health care mandate proposal a 'fraudulent, cynical, cruel' affront to Americans who need coverage
GREEN PARTY OF THE UNITED STATES
Monday, September 24, 2007
Dem plans are really billion-dollar subsidies for HMO-insurance campaign contributors, say Greens
Greens appeal to Dems who support Single-Payer/Medicare For All: America will not get real universal health care until some Greens get into Congress
WASHINGTON, DC -- Green Party leaders strongly criticized Sen. Hillary Clinton's health care reform plan, calling it a capitulation to private HMO and insurance corporations and an affront to Americans who lack adequate access to health care.
"Senator Clinton's $110-billion-per-year 'mandatory coverage' plan amounts to a gigantic subsidy for the HMO-insurance industry, while shifting the burden -- and the blame for lack of coverage -- onto people who desperately need health care," said John Battista, MD, former Green candidate for state representative in Connecticut and co-author of his state's single-payer legislation in 1999 (the Connecticut Health Care Security Act).
"As Michael Moore's documentary 'Sicko' showed, predatory insurance companies are the reason for America's health crisis, with 47 million uninsured and millions more whose coverage doesn't give them adequate treatment," added Dr. Battista. "Ms. Clinton's solution is to reward these companies for their greed, giving them more money. Ms. Clinton has been Congress's top recipient of money from the insurance industry [source: Center for Responsive Politics, <http://www.opensecrets.org>], which explains her dedication to corporate insurance and HMO profits."
The Green Party supports a Single-Payer national health plan, also called 'Medicare For All,' similar to the Canadian system, which would guarantee every American health care regardless of age, income, employment, or prior medical condition; allow choice of health care provider; provide low-cost or no-cost treatment and prescriptions (including certain forms of alternative medicine); and cost low- and middle-income Americans far less than they now pay for private or employer-based coverage by eliminating insurance and HMO company overhead.
Greens called Sen. Clinton's and other Democratic plans expensive and inefficient because of the duplication of administrative costs of multiple plans and because they offer fewer services in deference to profits. The US currently spends more that twice what other industrialized nations spend on health care: $7,129 per capita -- which would change only minimally under the Democratic plans.
For more on Green health care positions, visit <http://www.gp.org/organize/sicko.html>. For health care leaders in the Green Party Speakers Bureau, visit <http://gp.org/speakers/healthcare.shtml>.
"America doesn't need 'mandatory' coverage, America needs guaranteed health care," said Linda Manning Myatt, Michigan Green and spokesperson for the National Women's Caucus. "Unfortunately, all of the Democratic presidential candidates, except for Dennis Kucinich, are pandering for their insurance lobby friends. They care more about profits for their campaign contributors than about health care for the American people. Sen. Barack Obama has even admitted that his plan would sustain HMOs and insurance firms. Calling the Democrats' proposals 'universal health care' is fraudulent, cynical, and cruel."
Green leaders claim that Ms. Clinton promoted a disastrous reform plan in 1993, under her husband's administration, and has introduced an even worse plan in 2007. Greens have insisted that fair and accurate discussion of Single-Payer/Medicare For All be included in the media debate over health care.
"The only political party that supports Single-Payer Medicare For All is the Green Party," said Connecticut Green Justine McCabe, PhD, a psychologist and co-chair of the Green Party's International Committee. "We demand that the Green Party and Green candidates and other Single-Payer supporters be allowed to participate in the health care debate. Just as urgently, we need to get a few Greens elected to Congress. A few Green wins in congressional races in 2008 will jolt more Dems and even some Republicans into backing Single-Payer."
"Progressive Democrats and others who say they favor Single-Payer need to understand this point. American will not get Single-Payer until a non-corporate third party -- the Green Party -- gains a presence in Congress. If progressive, pro-Single-Payer Democrats insist on supporting Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama or other corporate Democrats in the 2008 race, then they will be complicit in keeping Single-Payer off the table for years to come," said Dr. McCabe.
Green Party of the United States
"Seeking Coverage For All"
"Health Reform Failure"
Physicians for a National Health Program