Let’s be clear that it was pressure by the California Nurses Association and the organization Healthy California that led to two days of hearings this week discussing the state’s current health care systems and the real potential of universal care here.
It’s a discussion that’s long overdue, but it’s also a deflection in an attempt by politicians to delay a vote on Senate Bill 562, which would create a single-payer medical system and guarantee health-care access to everyone in the state. The bill, supported by the CNA and Healthy California, was stalled earlier this year by Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, a Democrat, who has called it “woefully incomplete.”
But Rendon has never sincerely addressed the fact that such a major bill can’t be completed and passed without real consideration and discussion.
The hearings on Monday and Tuesday this week, however, were helpful at keeping SB 562 alive, but one wonders if political egos are going to dictate the outcome of this particular bill. Rendon made a decision and statement and undoubtedly doesn’t want to lose face by capitulating, even if it’s the reasonable and right thing to do for California citizens.
The Healthy California site provided the most information about the hearings that I could determine after a cursory review of various news sites. Here’s the reporting it provided, which contains a moving story about a baby named Sam who was born prematurely and now has a preexisting condition under the proposed Trump and GOP framework of health insurance. It would be a financial burden Sam would have to live with, well, forever if Trump gets his way on health care. Obamacare currently doesn’t allow the for-profit health insurance industry to discriminate against people with so-called preexisting conditions. Universal health care would render the whole argument moot.
The idea of universal health care for everyone is gaining traction throughout the country. Vermont’s U.S. Sen. Bernie Sanders has introduced a Medicare for All bill, which has been co-sponsored by California’s junior Senator Kamala Harris and 15 other senators. Notably, Trump apologizer U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein isn’t one of the co-sponsors of the bill. Obviously, the corrupt Trump regime and his supporters in the Republican Party, along with centrist-right Democratics like Feinstein, won’t support the bill, but the fact it has drawn so many co-sponsors shows single-payer is making dramatic inroads into the American political discussion.
The truth bears repeating over and over. The U.S. is the only advanced country in the world that doesn’t offer a universal health care system. Our medical outcomes here are dismal when compared to other advanced countries and we pay the most for health care in the entire world primarily because our system is based on funneling money to greedy health insurance companies.
Unfortunately, our political system, with some exceptions, is still pretty much based on how much money a politician can raise from vested interests in order to mount a successful campaign. (Watch the above video about Feinstein.) Republicans and Democrats alike take campaign money from the immoral health insurance industry, which works to deny care to sick people and raise premiums and deductibles on everyone for its own profits.
The bottom line is the proposed single-payer medical system in California and Sanders’ Medicare for All effort are gaining momentum.