HCAN! New York

Schumer “guarantees” public option.

Posted on July 10th, 2009 by David Vigoda

An aide to New York Senator Schumer, a key figure on health care reform, gave an unequivocal answer to a crucial question yesterday. This was the question: “Can we count on Senator Schumer to be a bold advocate for President Obama’s health care plan and support reform only if it includes a strong public option?” The reply was a single word: “Yes.”

The aide went on to make this startling announcement: “He [Senator Schumer] guarantees that there will be a public option. He knows that this is the way things have to go.”

Want to hear it for yourself? Watch the video.

The event was a rally outside Senator Schumer’s Albany office on July 9 to thank him for supporting a public option and call on him to be our advocate in the fight for a strong plan.

The rally was sponsored by MoveOn.org and the centerpiece of the event was the presentation of a petition—380 pages long—signed by some 4,800 New Yorkers. It expresses strong support for the choice of a public health insurance option operating alongside private plans.

The Albany rally was one of some 150 held simultaneously outside Congressional offices around the country.

Schumer’s guarantee of a public option makes clear that we are making tremendous progress in our campaign for guaranteed affordable health care for all this year. In fact the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) just joined several committees in the House by releasing a bill that includes a public plan.

But it is too early to declare victory. Everyone who cares about this must do something to register their ‘vote.’ Sign a pledge, make a phone call, attend a house meeting or rally, go door to door. Tell people you know that there is a nation-wide grassroots campaign to get out the ‘vote.’

The time is now, because right now Congress is writing the future of health care.

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