Health-care debate will begin after Thanksgiving
Mesa Independent Examiner
Nov 23, 2009
Saturdays Senate vote ensures that health-care legislation will face a scrutinizing debate after the Thanksgiving break. The vote, 60 to 39, was a close call for Democrats in favor of the bill and shows that it will take more than a partisan approach to draw up passable legislation for health-care reform.
The bill, as it stands now, will see many changes before an agreement among Democrats can be reached. Issues like abortion, taxes and the public option have created a divide within the Democratic Party. According to CNN: "Senator Dick Durbin, of Illinois, the chamber's second-ranking Democrat, acknowledged he was open to changing the bill's controversial government-run public health insurance option favored by the left.”
Durbin told NBC’s Meet the Press," We are open because we want to pass the bill.”
Republicans, on the other hand, say the bill fails to combat the real issue Americans have with health-care, the cost. Senate Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell, and other Republicans are pressing for an “incremental approach,” one that would cut the cost of health-care without “creating a new bureaucracy.”
CNN reported: “We think we ought to go step-by-step to improve the system," McConnell said. "The American people are not complaining about the quality of health care. They're complaining about the cost of health care.”
Proposals offered by either side differ dramatically; the question is, which proposal best reflects the will of the American people?
Do the majority of Americans want reform that will include mandates, fines, government intervention and the likelihood of higher taxes and premiums; a plan that can boast it is deficit neutral because it allows for the collection of revenue immediately for benefits that will not be implemented until 2013 or later?
Or does the Majority want legislation that will focus on the cutting down costs without changing the entire system; a system that a good majority of Americans are happy with?
After the Thanksgiving break, when Senate members return to debate health-care reform, let’s hope they do so with the will of the American people in mind rather then their own partisan agendas.