Even as Governor Doyle touts his new BadgerCare plus program, it might be time to rethink some of the state sponsored health care programs. On the front pages of today's Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, our governor is proudly touting his state sponsored health care program that will provide access for every single Wisconsin child to be given affordable health insurance. (Yes, this includes the rich people.)
In fact, state sponsored children's health care, has been all over the front pages of newspapers all across America. Schip, has been hotly debated all across the country.
Schip is a the federally approved "State Children's Health Insurance Program". This is a health insurance program designed to insure children of working parents. Even though the parents of these children are working, many still fall below the national poverty level.
This was a program created in 1990's by REPUBLICANS, to ensure that children of these working parents are still able to get proper health care. In general, each individual state administers the program and receives matching funds from the federal government.
This is truly a noble cause that was meant to help those parents that are working like crazy, but still cannot afford health insurance for their children.
Over the recent months, now that it is time to re-authorize the program, Schip has been hijacked by the Democrats and used as a campaign weapon against Republicans. Any Republican who voted against the Democrats expansion of Schip, has been under vicious attacks.
The Democrats have gone so far as to start phone and letter writing campaigns against those Republicans attempting to alert Americans to the serious new problems being created by the Democrats new Schip program.
In our own first congressional district, Congressman Paul Ryan, has been under continuous attack from letters to the editor and newspaper editors.
Let us set the politics aside for a moment and take a quick look at some of the problems that the Republicans in the US legislature are attempting to alert us.
One of the most major problems that we are being told about the Democrats proposal is that this new Schip program would be expanded to cover families that make as high as $80,ooo a year. This is not the working poor in America. Most Americans certainly believe that a family making $80,000 should be able to purchase their own health insurance for their children.
Another big problem is on how we should fund this massive expansion to the program. The Democrats new program would create a federal tax of 61 cents on cigarettes. This would fund the almost $35 billion program expansion.
There are many other problems with the Schip program, including the number of ADULTS on this children's health care program. Apparently, the Democrats want to include 25 year old adults on this program. We could also talk about illegal immigrants on the program.
The problems with this new Schip program that they are too numerous to list here.
What would be nice to know is exactly how the people of America view the Democrats new Schip proposal. We have seen polls on the subject, but the pollsters are accused of bias, so it is hard to get an accurate portrait of exactly what Americans are thinking.
This past Tuesday, a huge window opened up to America. This issue was on the ballot in the state of Oregon.
The voters in the blue state of Oregon voted on an expansion of health care for their children. The similarities between the Democrat Governor of Oregon and the national Democrat's Schip was erringly familiar.
The Democrat Governor of Oregon wanted to expand health care for his children's health care program. He wanted expand the program to reach those families making more money (up to $62,000 a year). He wanted to use a cigarette tax of 84.5 cents a pack in order to pay for the program.
Here was the perfect opportunity for every single person in the US to get an idea of exactly which direction this new Schip program should go.
Oregon is a blue state so this new Democrat proposal should have easily passed. And by the way, it was for the children.
Every single voter, in ever single Oregon county, had the opportunity to voice their opinion on this subject.
So which direction did the voters go in Oregon?
They crushed it. In a blaze of cigarette smoke, the voters of Oregon denied their governor the expanded children's health care.
Expanding the state sponsored children's health care program was not only defeated, it got slobberknockered. (Definition of slobberknockered is when someone gets hit so hard, it knocks the slobber out of their mouths)
Of the 36 counties in Oregon, only one county actually voted for the program expansion. Only the county that Portland is in, Multnomah, passed the new program.
So what does this mean for the rest of America?
If these state run entitlement programs are so popular with Americans, as we are told by the Democrats, why is it that health insurance designed "for the children" was so crushed by the voters of Oregon?
We are being told by the Democrats in Oregon that is was the millions of dollars worth of ads placed by the cigarette companies, the brought defeat to the expanded health care coverage.
Sorry, but that excuse does not fly. A majority of Americans do not smoke and most do not care about a cigarette tax.
It has to be more than that.
As Wisconsinites, we need to learn something from the voters of Oregon. Our state legislators need to be paying very close attention to what just happened in Oregon. Do your constituents really want to expand health care for all children in Wisconsin? If so, what price are they willing to pay for this new entitlement program?
Washington, DC should also be paying very close attention to what just happened in Oregon.
Why did the people of Oregon reject expansion of a children's health care program?
If a liberal blue state of Oregon rejected this, who is to say that many voters all across America have the same problem with government sponsored programs.
What happened in Oregon should give pause to every single elected official in every single state. Every legislator needs to head back to their voters and stop assuming they know how they think and feel. Perhaps now is a good time to actually sit down and listen to your constituents.
Perhaps voters have just had enough of the entitlement programs.
I do not know what the reason is, but I do know that now is the time for our leaders to start listening to the people.
This was a decisive defeat on a program and that is currently being shoved down the throats of voters here in Wisconsin and through out the rest of the United States.