Is the Massachusetts Senate Race a Referendum?

Tonight I wrote the following in a discussion thread on one of the mainstream media websites covering the Massachusetts senate election. Thankfully, direct feedback has been mostly positive and constructive, which is a hopeful sign.

My family pays for our own healthcare – pretty expensive but fortunately we’re able to do it. Our rates have been increasing at about 22% per year, and we’re pretty sure we are not alone in this regard. So the following comments are not about what’s best for me, although yes I am watching that 22%-per-year trend with some degree of concern.

So putting politics aside, let’s talk about real-life situations.

Who among us is being priced out of affordable insurance?

Who is trapped in a dead-end job for fear of losing your company benefit?

Who got laid off recently and is hosed?

Who is working hard to be able to do the right thing and buy insurance for your family, but cannot yet afford to do so? In this situation, who will win? Will you reach your illusive goal, or will a medical emergency happen first and knock you out of the game?

Who has been downsized by your ex-employer, then hired right back as a contractor without health benefits?

Who has moved to a different state for work, lost your insurance in the process, then gotten into a bureaucratic fight to qualify for any kind of insurance in the new state?

I could go on, but these are real issues that I’m sure sound painfully familiar to many of us who are reading this thread.

I won’t stand on a soapbox and tout my political affiliation, because in the face of these realities, it doesn’t matter. We can get caught up in deciding for ourselves who’s illegal or who’s lazy, but the bottom line is that many of us are working our tail ends off and playing by the rules, yet still cannot secure adequate medical protection for ourselves or loved ones.

So after the dust has settled on the MA election, what are we going to do about it, regardless of party or filibuster-proof majorities or whatever?

For all who are celebrating tonight’s outcome as a victory, I will acknowledge your happiness, but please tell us what the next steps should for healthcare reform in this country. It’s not enough to be happy that the other guy’s proposal has been compromised. I really want to hear what your proposals are. If they’re good, I’ll gladly offer kudos.

Here are a few responses that popped up before the entire thread got lost in the deluge:

  • One solution is tort reform, which lowers the inserence (sic) for doctors which in turn lowers costs and rates.
  • You are dead on with your concerns; and these are the concerns WE should all have, whether we are in this position or not.
  • Here’s one, make health care transportable much like auto insurance or life insurance!

Thank you posters for taking a moment to offer rational comments and suggestions!

One Response to “Is the Massachusetts Senate Race a Referendum?”

  1. Add a “The Same Health Insuarance for All at the Same Price for All” amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Included addressing the same reforms we need now.

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