KUCINICH: Why I Voted Against Health Care Reform

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DENNIS KUCINICH: We have been led to believe that we must make our health care choices only within the current structure of a predatory, for-profit insurance system which makes money not providing healthdennis_kucinich_as_mayor_of_cleveland.thumbnail.jpgcare. Clearly, the insurance companies are the problem, not the solution.  They are driving up the cost of health care.  Because their massive bureaucracy avoids paying bills so effectively, they force hospitals and doctors to hire their own bureaucracy to fight the insurance companies to avoid getting stuck with an unfair share of the bills.  The result is that since 1970, the number of physicians has increased by less than 200% while the number of administrators has increased by 3000%.  It is no wonder that 31 cents of every health care dollar goes to administrative costs, not toward providing care.  Even those with insurance are at risk. The single biggest cause of bankruptcies in the U.S. is health insurance policies that do not cover you when you get sick. […] By incurring only a new requirement to cover pre-existing conditions, a weakened public option, and a few other important but limited concessions, the health insurance companies are getting quite a deal. During the debate, when the interests of insurance companies would have been effectively challenged, that challenge was turned back.  The “robust public option” which would have offered a modicum of competition to a monopolistic industry was whittled down from an initial potential enrollment of 129 million Americans to 6 million.  An amendment which would have protected the rights of states to pursue single-payer health care was stripped from the bill at the request of the Administration.  Looking ahead, we cringe at the prospect of even greater favors for insurance companies. MORE

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