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60 Votes: Democratic Caucus Must Move Forward With Promise of Quality, Affordable Health Care for All With a Public Insurance Option
Date:11/19/2009

WASHINGTON, Nov. 19 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Now that a bill has been introduced in the Senate, USAction today called upon every member of the Democratic Caucus to vote to allow debate to begin so that the country can move closer to the promise of quality, affordable health care for all.

"Majority Leader Reid has demonstrated principled leadership in moving this bill forward," said USAction Program Director Alan Charney. "Now it's time for every member of the Democratic Caucus to support him. Even senators who have concerns with the legislation should vote to proceed to an open debate."

USAction supports reform that will provide more affordable health coverage to America's families and businesses, stop insurance company abuses, provide the choice of a public health insurance option and is financed with progressive revenues. Charney noted that the Senate bill unveiled Thursday includes a 0.5 percent increase in the Medicare Hospital Insurance tax for individuals who earn more than $200,000 and couples who earn more than $250,000. However, it also includes a tax on health care plans for many working Americans, which USAction opposes.

"This bill is moving in the right direction and is better than the legislation reported out of the Senate Finance Committee," Charney said. "It can be better still. We should recognize that taxing health care benefits would disproportionately impact families, women and children. We urge a vote for the motion to proceed and then we can improve this bill."

USAction co-founded Health Care for America Now, the nation's largest health care reform campaign, and co-chairs its steering committee. Since May, USAction and its affiliates and partners in 28 states organized or supported more 363 town hall meetings and forums on health care and generated 389,028 grassroots contacts to Congress, including phone calls, letters, faxes, emails and petitions.

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