Thursday, September 3, 2009

Open Letter to President Obama

Dear President Obama,

You ran on a promise of affordable healthcare for all. This has been the goal of Democrats and progressives for nearly three quarters of a decade. A bill without a public option would be a boon to the insurance and pharmaceutical industries and would serve to actually make our healthcare system more expensive for all. Please be true to the principles you campaigned on. Your legacy should not be a healthcare boondoggle that hangs like an albatross around your neck. Worse yet, the albatross would be unfairly hung around the necks of all progressives and Democrats, and would make a Republican Neo-Con resurgence almost inevitable. Teddy Kennedy would already be turning in his grave if he knew you were entertaining going forward without a public option. Prove you are carrying the torch he handed you when he endorsed your campaign. Be the man of the people you promised to be. You work for us Mr. President. You are accountable to us. Be true. Stand firm. We who supported you so steadfastly during your campaign will stand firm with you – but you above all must stand firm now. NO healthcare bill without the public option!

I wrote the above message on a petition I just signed through I would like to add to it here. A healthcare bill written without a public option will be a healthcare bill written, for all intents and purposes, by and for the Pharmaceutical and Insurance industries. Too long under the Bush administration, were bills written and signed, serving corporate interests at the expense of the public interest. Your campaign promise of change had, at its heart, this resounding distinction. You must shepherd a Congress with the public interest at heart. Only then will we know that change is happening. This is a critical moment Mr. President. It would be better to have fought and to have lost than to capitulate and lose faith with the American people. Undoing the public option is not compromise; it is a betrayal of principle.

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