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Friday's letters: We need to start over on health care reform

Final option: Send health bill to House | Jan. 21, editorial

Start over on health care reform

I find it outrageous that you advocate more shenanigans by Congress to get anything labeled "health care reform" into law, i.e., your opinion that the House should pass the Senate version of the atrocious "reform" bill so the president can "declare victory" on this issue.

While your statement that "the majority of the Senate and the House support health care reform" is or was likely true, it has become very evident that the majority of the American people do not support this current abomination of Congress that is being called reform.

If President Barack Obama really wants to save his image and save his presidency, here is what he should do:

At the earliest possible moment he should call a press conference to declare the current health care reform legislation dead on arrival if it gets to his desk. He should tell Congress to wipe its slate clean and begin anew with a series of single-issue proposals and abandon any further effort for an omnibus health care reform bill.

Then he should further admonish Congress to harken to his earlier promise to keep the debates highly visible and understandable for the American people to watch and comment upon with educated opinions.

Both the president and the Congress need to understand that the electorate is not happy with the way this health care issue has been handled and we demand that they clean up their acts!

Thomas Fallon, Lecanto

Final option: Send health bill to House Jan. 21, editorial

Citizens are angry at an arrogant government

If this alleged health care bill were the product of a Republican-controlled Senate, the screams of protest emanating from the St. Petersburg Times would be deafening.

America wants to start over with nonpartisan health care reform. This reform should include tort reform, equal treatment regardless of a worker's union status, transportability, and a national policy crafted by all parties concerned.

What the St. Petersburg Times editorial board supports is a partisan 2,000-plus-page tome, created in secret, that favors a selected few, punishes many — both private and corporate — has a great chance of being unconstitutional, journeys far down the road of government control of the health industry and promotes a political agenda.

Citizen protest over an ill-designed health care dictate is but a symptom of a greater malady: that of a deaf, arrogant government led by a Democratic Party with a sense of elitist entitlement but no directional ability. Unemployment is devastating America's economy and politicians on all levels could not care less. Worse, they are all deaf to our pleas. Stimulus packages have proved to help few yet burden future generations with a yoke of debt.

Your editorial doesn't represent fairness, compromise or an intelligent grasp of health reform. It does, however, sound like a group of bitter, desperate progressives living under a cloud of fear that their particular agenda might suffer a well deserved defeat.

Gary West, St. Petersburg

Final option: Send health bill to House Jan. 21, editorial

A formula for defeat

Your editorial recommendation that the House pass the already passed Senate health coverage bill overlooks the fact that many first-term House Democrats, in a desire to be re-elected this year in their centrist or Republican-leaning districts, would not vote for it. And the public outcry over such a ramrod tactic would ensure that Democrats would lose a significant number of Senate seats in November as well as probably losing control of the House.

We need health coverage reform, but not this monstrosity that specifically gives rewards to special interest groups that vote heavily Democratic, and various other negatives.

The president Wednesday spoke of cutting back to points more agreeable to all. The country and the Democrats would be far better off if Congress did so.

Kerry Fitzpatrick, St. Petersburg

Final option: Send health bill to House

An irresponsible idea

In response to your editorial, yes there is now clarity over health care reform. Had you spent time listening to the people in Massachusetts in preparation for your editorial, you would maybe better understand why people reject it. It is full of bribes, deception and costs that you must believe are irrelevant.

Your suggestion to force the legislation forward versus listening to the people is irresponsible. If you would spend 50 percent as much time investigating Washington politics as you do investigating the Scientologists in Clearwater, maybe your readers would consider your editorials relevant.

Jerry Shaw, Wesley Chapel

Scott Brown

The double standard

Scott Brown, the winner of the special election in Massachusetts, posed nude for Cosmopolitan 25 years ago. Does anyone think for a minute that if a woman — any woman, from either political party — had done that, she would be able to get her name on the ballot, let alone win?

Jim Murphy, Tampa

GOP win in Mass. tilts Senate, slaps majority Jan. 20, story

A message for Congress

The pundits who are saying that the Scott Brown victory in Massachusetts is a call for a more ideologically conservative agenda for our nation have missed the point.

What the people of Massachusetts have communicated is that they are tired of a Congress that is concerned first and foremost with the financial success of corporations, banks and insurance companies (those who contribute so handsomely to the congressional coffers).

This Congress has failed, both on the left and the right, in putting the needs and concerns of the people they represent first. A cursory analysis of the health care reform efforts demonstrates that the health of our citizens was never even brought to the negotiating table. The primary concern in all health reform negotiations was how to maintain the fiscal success of the insurance industry and pharmaceutical industry.

While tens of thousands of Americans have lost their homes, Congress has worked hard to ensure that the executives of AIG and other failed financial institutions maintain their obscene salaries!

The message from Massachusetts is that we are tired of this form of representation. I wish Scott Brown good luck in the Senate. I hope Congress recognizes this wakeup call to put the needs of the American people first. I fear they will again use ideology, division and partisan politics to continue business as usual while the American people suffer.

Edward Briggs, St. Petersburg

GOP win in Mass. tilts Senate, slaps majority Jan. 20, story

What have they done?

The Democrats have done it again. Reportedly, in their anger and disappointment with President Barack Obama and the Democrats in Congress, many liberals and progressives in Massachusetts decided to either support the Republican candidate or none. The result is another conservative in the Senate and the probable demise of health care reform, environmental progress, and other priorities of the Democrats.

I guess they learned nothing from the election of 2000, when Democrats and independents who were not thrilled with Al Gore voted for Ralph Nader. The result surely determined the course of history, for the United States and the world.

Judy Moore, Lutz

GOP win in Mass. tilts Senate, slaps majority Jan. 20, story

We do have a voice

Thank you, Massachusetts! I have been very angry at what has been going on in America. Everything seemed hopeless until the people of Massachusetts said, "No more."

I had just about thrown in the towel, figuring "What's the point?" This administration does not listen to "we the people." Then this election brought me back to the reality that we, as Americans, do have a voice, something that I think has been ignored by our president. He just needed a little nudge.

Now, after this wakeup call, we can move forward, all of us, regardless of party affiliations, and embrace the bond that unites us all, the bond called America, the land of the free.

Iris Beckmann, Spring Hill

Friday's letters: We need to start over on health care reform 01/21/10 [Last modified: Thursday, January 21, 2010 6:06pm]
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