Response From Sen. Murray on Health Care

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My comments are added below. I emphasized parts I feel should be seen.

Dear Mr. Gardner:

Thank you for writing me to share your thoughts on health care reform. It is good to hear from you.

Likewise. A little late, but still welcome.

I believe that health care reform is one of the most critical issues facing our nation. Our current health care system is unstable and unsustainable. Too many people do not have health care coverage and many of those who have coverage are worried about losing it in this uncertain economy. Every day, businesses and families are finding it harder and harder to deal with increasing health care premiums.

Right now, the people disagree. The #1 critical issue is the economy.

It is not true that there is anyone in this country without health care. Anyone who is sick can walk into any hospital and get care. There are also a number of free clinics in every neighborhood, in addition to countless government programs. I myself freely donate my money to help the sick and poor.

Our health care insurance costs, however, are skyrocketing. The explanation is simple. See, as government has increased regulation of the industry, we are now living in a time where I get to choose between no health care insurance, or one, maybe two, competitively priced options from my employer. Also, thanks to people like then-Attorney General Gregoire, insurance companies have to provide far more services than the people want.

The reason why so many people are losing their health insurance nowadays is because they are losing their jobs, thanks to the economic policies that you, Sen. Murray, have championed and voted for. Remember when Pres. Obama declared that if we don’t pass the stimulus, things are going to get much worse? Well, things are even worse than those predictions, thanks to the so-called stimulus!

Add in to that the skyrocketing costs of malpractice insurance, thanks to people like Sen. John Edwards, the limited number of people who choose medicine as a profession, the limited number of hospitals that are able to turn a profit and thus stay in business, and the cost is rising rapidly. These are all things government is doing, and if government would simply stop it, the costs would quickly go back down.

In addition, Washington state family budgets cannot sustain the continual rise in health care costs and hidden taxes in the form of rising premiums to cover the uninsured. If we do not get health care costs under control, local, state and federal government budgets will have to take on the weight of rising health care costs. While health care reform may require an initial cost investment, it will pay off in the long term and the cost of letting the system become more unstable is much greater. Without reform to our health care system, premiums will continue to rise, coverage will become more uncertain, businesses will lose competitiveness, and it will be harder for Americans to have access to care.

Sen. Murray’s logic is absurd. People are finding it difficult to afford health care. So, she reasons, we have to increase costs right now. Because, in the “long term”, things will become more “stable”, because the cost of instability is much greater (than a massive government bureaucracy???)

Instability, in Sen. Murray’s mind, appears to mean “freedom”. See, we can’t predict what those doctors and patients and insurance companies might do if left to themselves. (Their track record of providing almost every advancement in medical history, and then augmenting that by bringing it to the masses at an affordable cost is hardly evidence, right?) This means that the medical industry is “unstable”, so we have to fix that by eliminating freedom.

The reforms she is proposing in the bill she voted for will catastrophically destroy the private industry. It slaughters the Golden Goose. NONE of the things she hopes to achieve will be accomplished by that bill. She is either too incompetent to put two and two together, or she believes everything that spews forth from the lips of the liar Barack Obama. (Yes, “YOU LIE!”)

To address these issues, the Senate released the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act on November 19, 2009. This legislation lays out policy changes for health care reform in America. This package works to rein in health care costs with a goal of lowering them in the long term and works to ensure that all Americans have access to high-quality, affordable health care coverage. It allows those who like their health insurance to keep it and provides options to those who do not have access to health insurance coverage.

We already have access to high-quality, affordable (free) health care coverage thanks to our hospitals who, by federal law, cannot turn anyone away, and the benevolence of the American people, acting independently without government.

She’s admitting, clearly, that in the short-term, things will get much, much worse. But in the long term (years? Decades? Centuries?) costs will become lower. How does she know this? What if things go much, much worse than even she predicted? Obama’s track record on predictions is that whatever he predicts is likely a baseline for the impossibly good.

This bill also includes provisions to implement several key health insurance reforms. For example, insurance companies would no longer be able to refuse coverage to individuals due to preexisting conditions, patients’ out-of-pocket expenses would be limited and all annual and lifetime caps on insurance coverage would be eliminated.

Hooray! We’re going to legislate insurance companies out of existence. Sorry if you don’t see me cheering with you. Unlike you, I don’t believe the evil is profits and corporations. The evil is government bureaucrats who believe they know more than those who are faced with life’s challenges.

Why would I, a healthy person, pay the same rate as the sick? I won’t, and neither will millions of Americans. What will happen, mark my words, is only the very sickest of Americans will buy health insurance, and health insurance companies will quickly go bankrupt. You cannot expect that I am going to pay the same as a sick person out of the goodness of my heart. No, I am going to save every dime I can get because I need to feed and clothe my children, even if it means taking on some of the risks myself.

In addition, an independent analysis by the Congressional Budget Office determined that this bill is fully paid for, will provide coverage to more than 94% of Americans, and will reduce the deficit by $127 billion over the next ten years. This study also shows the American people that the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act saves money while extending the solvency of Medicare and putting patients first.

The CBO has recanted, saying that the bill will cost much more than this. Don’t hide behind the CBO. We know the games that you senators played to get a favorable report. And what happens after ten years?

And tell me, Senator, how does cutting $400 billion from medicare help increase Medicare’s solvency? And why does $400 billion need to be cut to fund the program? Why do the benefits kick in years after the taxes kick in? How is this sustainable?

How do you intend to continue socialist policies when you run out of other people’s money?

If you really wanted to put patients first, you would put them in charge of their own health care. Instead, this is obviously a program designed to put the government first and keep the patients in line at the public trough of socialism.

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act passed the full Senate on December 24, 2009. The House of Representatives passed their own version of health care reform on November 7, 2009. This bill and the Senate bill will now need to be combined into one bill through a conference process between the House and the Senate.

And when will this conference committee occur? Oh, you mean the secret meetings  outside of all the rules of the house and senate? That thing? Please, Senator. We see what you are doing and it is wrong.

Developing legislation to reform our health care system has been a very lengthy process. Over the last year, I have heard from thousands of constituents all across Washington state on this topic and they have weighed in on all sides of this issue. I know this is an important issue for many and throughout this debate passions have run high on all sides. Please know that as the Senate moves forward on health care reform legislation, I will certainly keep your thoughts in mind.

I strongly doubt you care about anything I had to say. You certainly seemed to miss all of the points I felt were important, and instead talked about something completely different. Rather than take on the health care critics head on, your side has been dodging and ignoring us. That means either you can’t hear us (and we need to speak louder), or you have no argument. I believe it is the latter, since the vast majority of American people disagree with you.

Unlike you, I am not scared of what you have to say, and strongly encourage you to speak and write as much as you can on the topic. I will gladly meet every argument you make, head-on.

Oh, by the way, you may want to fix the page at http://murray.senate.gov/contact/. Your constituents have a hard time contacting you.

For more information, the Senate health care reform bill can be found on my website at: http://murray.senate.gov/healthcarereform/

That web page is devoid of any useful information.

Please, please, provide details on why you voted the way you did. I will gladly read them.

I hope all is well in Tacoma.

No, all is not well.

I have a lot of friends out of work who cannot find jobs. Small businesses are laying people off because of the uncertainty this bill and other issues the democrats in Washington D.C. are advocating.

We are stocking up on guns and bullets, and we are worried that the next election might be stolen. We are seriously considering whether the constitution has any meaning at all to you people in Washington D.C. and we are wondering how, we the people, can convince you to adhere strictly to Article 1, Section VIII of that sacred document.

Sincerely,

Patty Murray
United States Senator

Sen. Murray,

I strongly encourage you to consider the following highly relevant points.

(1) Article 1, Section VIII details the things congress can do. Mandating medical insurance with threat of fine is not one of them. Please, please carefully consider the Constitution of the United States and understand that the last extra-constitutional government we had was overthrown with violence. That document is a sacred contract between the people and the government. As an official of that government, you are allowed to choose whether to keep that contract or to break it. As the people, we are obliged to ensure that it is kept by you. We have many ways to reform government: the soap box, the ballot box, and finally the ammo box. Yes, this is a threat to you and anyone else who fails to defend the constitution.

(2) Economically speaking, socialism is a disaster. Socialized medicine is killing the people in Great Britain and Canada, and everywhere else it is applied. Our country is founded on individual liberty. There are other countries with different ideas about individual liberty. Go live in them rather than try to bring their failed policies to us.

(3) In medicine, the problem is clear: Government is interfering and distorting the marketplace. Everything from over-regulation to tort laws to entitlement programs are keeping the medical system bogged down. Despite this, there is no medical system, anywhere in the universe, superior to ours. Rather than go the way of the rest of the earth, shouldn’t we take a different direction and expand upon our freedoms by eliminating government from our medical system? I mean, if socialism is the problem, more socialism isn’t going to fix it.

(4) We see what you are doing, and we know why you are doing it. Stop being coy with us, and either truly change your intentions or at least be explicit about them. You want to see America destroyed, our freedoms eliminated, and everyone either a slavemaster or a slave on the great plantation that America should be, in your eyes. America’s evil is its freedom and liberty, and only when these things are eliminated can we be considered “good”.

(5) The policy of “shut up” doesn’t work so well, does it, Sen. Murray?

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