After reading this article on CNN.com, I finally found someone who has been trying to express what I have felt all summer – how an Independent voter thinks; or at least how I think. We are as a group fiscally conservative yet socially progressive. We are in the middle. And at 41% of America, a very large middle indeed. We are a voice who has not been heard in the health care dialogue – if you want to call it that.
As an Independent who voted for Obama, I can safely say I would not change my vote. However, in order to get my vote again, Obama and Congress have to change. This has not been a good summer for the President and Congress. It has been very reminiscent of the Clinton administration’s attempt to change health care. Both have been sorely needed reforms to American daily living. However, both have been shot down by the Republican Party, the Health Care Industry, Moderates, misinformation, and a Democratic Congress unwilling to get things done. It brings back memories of 1993 and of a change in the way politics were done in this country.
In the attempt that almost sank the Clinton presidency, the Health Security Act mandated that every American who did not have health care be on the government plan and they could not leave until they could prove that they had coverage by another insurer. Now while Obama’s plan is somewhat similar, the 2009 version also hopes to insures some 35-45 million uninsured Americans.
What most Independents will tell you is we are not against health care reform. On the other hand, we don’t believe there are any death panels either . We shake our head at the drivel that has come out of Washington on this issue this summer. We don’t believe either party regardless of what comes out of their mouths when it comes to health care.
What we are for is lowering the cost of health care, medicine, and visits to the doctor. If health care were more affordable, more people would, and could, use it properly. Independents would also tell you we are for preventative care which helps to solve health problems before they become a problem. These include high cholesterol, blood pressure, and putting the emphasis on healthy living.I don’t see how providing health care to millions who don’t have it and making them pay for it with money they don’t have is going to improve anything. Free clinics, low cost preventative care would do more good than an umbrella plan of coverage.
However, what Independents are against is this – another government program that costs the taxpayer money and provides no incentives to get off it. Even in 1993, Senator Patrick Moynihan summed up the problem in both time periods when he said:
“There is no health care crisis, there is an insurance crisis”
Succinctly put and prophetic for its time, the problem in this country is not health care but the corporatization of the health care industry from pharmaceuticals to insurance to care. A doctor and the patient should be making the decisions for the health and well being of the patient. All the other industries are there as peripherals to assist in care not determine it. Until how the health industry works is reformed, they will be no change in America. There is room for everyone to make money and, more importantly, to prolong life by providing prompt care that not only treats the problem but helps to prevent it in others. Until Congress and the President realize this, the current health care plan will go down in a flaming pile of paper just like in 1993.