I regularly receive the RWJF News Digest: Health Insurance Coverage from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation . Today I was sad to see the following title heading up their coverage:
But, as I read through this article, there was a glimmer of hope. That glimmer? John Edwards. More after the break.
The article starts out with an introduction to the "surprising" trend in health care industry donations.
"In a reversal from past election cycles," Democratic presidential candidates are getting more money from the health care industry than their Republican counterparts, even though Democratic proposals "have caused deep anxiety in some sectors of the industry," the New York Times reports.
And in the first nine months of the 2000 presidential campaign — when there was no incumbent in the White House running for re-election — the Republican presidential candidates took in $3.9 million from the health care industry, compared with $1.7 million raised by the Democrats, campaign finance records show.
There you have it, they are worried about the Democratic proposals, they are worried that Democrats will control the House, Senate, and White House. So what do they do? They buy the candidates. Don't consider for a moment that ISN'T what is happening. From the New York Times story:
“Everybody in the industry knows that health care reform is on its way, and you have only two decisions: sit on the sidelines or get on the field,” said Kenneth E. Raske, president of the Greater New York Hospital Association.
Get on the field and buy favors. What kind of purchasing are they doing?
An analysis of campaign finance records by the Center for Responsive Politics for the Times showed that Democrats received about $6.5 million from the industry while Republicans raised almost $4.8 million. With $2.7 million in donations through the end of September, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.) has collected the most, "despite her calls for broad changes to the health care system that could pose serious financial challenges to private insurers, drug companies and other sectors." Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.) raised about $2.2 million, putting him in second place, while Republicans Mitt Romney, former Massachusetts governor, and Rudolph W. Giuliani, former New York City mayor, were in third and fourth place, raising $1.6 million and $1.4 million, respectively. Democrats are outpacing Republicans in raising money from every sector of the health care industry, including "pharmaceuticals, insurers and health maintenance organizations, doctors, hospitals and nursing homes," reports the Times.
It's depressing that the two top donation getters from pharmaceuticals, insurers, HMOs, doctors, hospitals, and nursing homes are Clinton and Obama. However, it isn't surprising. John Edwards is the only one saying we have to exclude these people from the table, or else they'll eat your lunch.
How does he fair? He raised less than 5% of all the donations from these industries, a meager $600,000.
The message from John Edwards is clear, and these donations prove that not only does he mean it, but that the health care industry is AFRAID he means it. On the other hand, regardless of the rhetoric and the plan that tries to be the John Edwards health care plan - Hillary Clinton is the Status Quo Candidate. She wants to negotiate with the health care industry, and they are showing their support for this backing. You know, she has an extra $3 million raised over John Edwards because of her willingness to work with big health.
John Edwards asks, do you believe she'll be the person to stand up to them?
Answer me this, do you believe it?
If you don't believe it, if you believe in Santa Claus, but don't believe that Senator Clinton will bring about change, then you need to step up to the plate. It's time to take action, it's time to join One Corps, it's time to give up that Mocha and donate $5 to the campaign.
Join with me today, in giving up something small, in order to create something large. I'm asking everyone reading this right now to give up their plans tonight, to stay in and have a Netflix movie night with a frozen pizza, and to give the $30 you save to John Edwards. Do it, you know you want to, and Pizza for Progressives makes it easy. It's time for change, and that change happens one person at a time, one pizza at a time. Click the ActBlue image and give that $30, please.
I will leave you with the newest John Edwards video.