Senator Tim Johnson Addresses Constituent on Health Care Reform Bill

Nicely done. Someone not known to me was kind enough to relate the story of a recent meeting and brief discussion with the senator. Here’s a bit:

I called Senator Tim Johnson’s office on Friday Nov. 20th to voice my opposition to the health care legislation. The Senate was planning on getting the legislation out of committee on Saturday Nov. 21st to be debated on the Senate floor starting the first week of December. The gentleman I spoke to on Nov. 20th informed me that Senator Johnson did not support the current bill, however he would be voting ‘yea’ to bring the bill out of committee so that it could be debated. I did the same drill as usual when I call, left my name and number and asked for Senator Johnson to vote NO.

I was in Rapid City on Tuesday November 24th and decided to go to Senator Johnson’s office, rather than call about my opposition to the current health care legislation. I was talking with the gentleman behind the counter and was explaining to him why I am against the bill. Before I was finished voicing my concerns, Senator Johnson walked in. I said, “Well there he is !”

Go and read it all.

6 thoughts on “Senator Tim Johnson Addresses Constituent on Health Care Reform Bill

  1. It was nice that that lady thought her experience was positive even though they disagreed. It’s always nice to see people debate divisive issues without shouting at each other (I know I’ve failed at that).

    But I think that lady was very misinformed about a lot of things:

    – She seems to be convinced that this reform will lead to rationing of care and people in Washington making medical decisions for patients. I think she’s been listening to too much conservative fearmongering because nothing like that will happen because of this reform.

    – She’s also trying to lump in conservative talking points about illegal immigration into health reform. It’s like she’s trying to downplay the need to insure the uninsured by implying that most of them are illegal immigrants or something. That’s just not true at all. All the versions of the bills that have been discussed in Congress clearly state that illegal immigrants can’t get health insurance through a public option. If they want insurance, they have to go through private companies.

    – I’ve noticed a lot of conservatives using the number of pages as arguements against recent bills, as if that’s a valid arguement. Who cares if a bill is 2000 pages, 10,000 pages or a million pages? In trying to reform such a huge part of our economy, I hope our representatives in Congress are making sure they’ve covered everything they can.

    – I might almost agree with her about the fines and jail time being weird, but the goal is to get everyone to get health insurance like how everyone gets auto insurance. Are there better insentives that can be used other than fines and jail time?

    One thing this lady has done is she’s inspired me to drop by Thune’s Sioux Falls office sometime instead of calling his DC office like I normally do.

    1. Haggs,

      A good portion of your comment belongs on the other site, but I’ll respond to it briefly here.

      It was indeed nice to see a friendly exchange between individuals who do not seem to have much in common on the matter being discussed.

      When a government takes over the medical system, it must lead to rationing of care or the costs will continue to rise unchecked as everyone simply gets more and more “free” health care. People are too selfish to not use stuff they don’t pay for. See Canada and Great Britain.

      There is little question that a portion of the uninsured are illegal immigrants (if one takes the 46 million as a starting point). There is no enforcement mechanism in the bills which would actively prevent illegal immigrants from getting public health care. It’s more of a don’t ask, don’t tell approach.

      I care if it is 1000 pages, etc. The larger a bill is, the greater probability of the law of unintended consequences rearing its very ugly head. Not to mention that the bills often grow to these enormous sizes based on all of the lawmakers getting their pieces of the money pie.

      No, everyone doesn’t have auto insurance, nor are they required to. Only those who operate vehicles–and the point of the insurance which is government mandated is to protect the people/property that the operator might damage, not the operator. The comparison to health care insurance is simply not valid.

      1. You’re right, my comment belonged at the other site. When I went there earlier, it said it was closed to comments, but it now appears to be allowing comments.

        Unfortunately, I still disagree with all your points. And I still think the page number thing is a silly argument. Even if the bill was one page long, conservatives would still be against it.

        1. Haggs,

          It would appear that you are not familiar with the military health care system or the VA. They are exactly what the government version of health care will become.

          Military hospitals have long lines all day with people waiting to get in for anything from sniffles to serious problems, all because it is free to them. That includes active service members and their families, and retirees and their immediate families.There aren’t enough doctors to see them all, so those that didn’t get seen today come back tomorrow. It goes on a first come first served basis, not by the seriousness of the case.

          If you have more patients than doctors can see, it leads to rationing to get the case load down, as well as less time for doctors to spend with patients.

          The VA Hospitals work the same way, except that most doctors or PAs at the VA have relatively little experience. Not real excited about their quality of care.

          Because I have to pay a portion of the health care I receive above and beyond my current insurance, I personally limit my families visits to the doctor to things that really need to be seen by him. Therefore the rationing is done by me, not by the government who personally doesn’t care about me or my family, and can’t make the best choices for us.

  2. Regarding the monstrous number of pages in this bill, I think James Madison said it best:

    It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made by men of their own choice, if the laws be so voluminous that they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man who knows what the law is today can guess what it will be to-morrow.

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