Rallying to shape the health reform debate

    Protesters ask lawmakers to reject a new public health insurance option.

    A casual coalition of fiscal conservatives staged small protests around Pennsylvania Friday, July 17. The activists say the national health care reform debate is moving too fast and in the wrong direction.

    Listen: [audio:090717teinsure.mp3]

    Doylestown mom Mariann Davies is suspicious. She’s doesn’t believe President Obama’s claims that Americans will get to keep the health care options they have.

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    dscn0416-1Davies says the proposal for a new public health insurance plan will usher in nationalized health care. She’s worried about rationing and long waits to see a doctor.

    Davies: We don’t believe that government should run health care, we are looking at the social security systems, Medicare, Medicaid. They’re broke, their bankrupt, their bloated bureaucracies, and that’s the last thing we need for people to get care. I don’t think that is going to be the most efficient, and or the less costly.

    Davies was among about 15 people who protested outside Senator Arlen Specter’s office in Center City Philadelphia.

    dscn0415-1Several protesters said the US government has done a poor job running the Medicare and Medicaid programs. By contrast, liberal-leaning activists say those programs are more efficient than the plans run by for-profit companies. Branch Heller is a member of ACORN, a community organizing group in Wilmington, Delaware.

    Heller: Those of you that don’t want the government involved in health care, you’re too late. The government is already there to the tune of 60.5 cents of every health care dollar, down to the low estimate of 40 cents of every health care dollar is paid for by the government.

    The fiscal conservatives protesting in Center City Philadelphia included members of the Kitchen Table Patriots from Doylestown and the Thomas Jefferson Club from Newtown.

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