Oct 10, 2007

Mr. "'I mean, people have access to health care in America—they can just go to the emergency room" Bush Blocks SCHIP



Ranking on the all-time least sympathy for the common person list, among the likes of Marie Antoinette ("Let them eat brioche") and his own mother (about hurricane Katrina relief "Everyone is so overwhelmed by the hospitality . . . this is working very well for them"), President Bush made no effort to air-brush his true feelings when he said,

"I mean, people have access to health care in America—they can just go to the emergency room."
This in regard to the new barriers his administration has thrown up to deter uninsured/underinsured children from getting the health insurance they need. The State Children's Health Insurance Programs (SCHIP) worked before and was authorized by the federal government as recently as a year ago. SCHIP pays for insurance for children whose families are not qualified for Medicaid, do not have private insurance, and cannot afford to purchase private insurance. A push for the expansion of SCHIP now has the feds stepping in and mucking up the waters for state governments, even though the expansion has great momentum on both sides of the aisle.

8 million children are uninsured in the US. That means they likely do not get preventive care. The kind of care that could keep them from having to get so sick they need to go to the emergency room. And many uninsured families use emergencies rooms as their only source of health care, constipating emergency rooms for those who are desperately ill. Bad for children. Bad for everyone. And shame on the most out-of-touch, not-my-problem politician in history, who claims that the SCHIP program is a poor use of federal funds. Poor use of funds? 40 days funding the illegal Iraq war would insure 10 million children for one year.

So far, eight states, Arizona, California, Illinois, Maryland, New Hampshire, New York and Washington have all joined New Jersey in suing the Bush administration for this. I hope more states affected by the SCHIP expansion blockage will get on board and force the issue loudly.

Reference:

Bush vetoes child health insurance plan

Eight states sue Bush administration over children's health care subsidization

Why I'm Suing the Bush Administration

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