Thursday, August 20, 2009

Senator Feingold- you are joking, right?

A couple of weeks ago, I emailed Senator Feingold's office requesting a townhall somewhere in southeast Wisconsin. There is nothing wrong with Feingold hosting townhalls in northern and western Wisconsin, but in order to allow all of Wisconsin to weigh in on the health care issue, it seems only right that Feingold visit the southeast corner at least once, since a majority of the state lives here.

This is the response I got from Feingold's office:

Dear Ms. Carpenter,

Thank you for contacting me regarding your desire to attend one of my listening session to discuss health care reform. To get the most up to date and accurate schedule of my listening session please visit my website at

I look forward to seeing you at one of those listening session and to hear your thoughts on health care reform. It is far past time for Congress to ensure all Americans have guaranteed, affordable, high-quality health care. Too many Americans are forced to make basic decisions regarding their health based on cost rather than on medical reasons; too many delay seeking treatment and do not receive preventive care, which results in more costly, or even fatal, consequences down the line. Our country spends $5,670 per capita annually on health care - which is twice as much as any other industrialized nation - and 15.6 percent of our gross domestic product. Despite this spending, we are not healthier than those other countries, and we still have more than 46 million Americans - including eight million children - who do not have health insurance, and countless others who are underinsured.

As you know, these high and rising costs take a tremendous toll on American families and businesses. While inflation grew 9.7 percent, and wage growth was 12.3 percent, premiums for family insurance coverage rose 59 percent from 2000-2004 and show no sign of stabilizing. As a result, many employers are shifting much of their health care costs to employees, no longer providing health benefits, or eliminating positions.

Reforming our health care system is also an economic imperative. Americans spend an unsustainable $2.2 trillion on health care each year. From ensuring the solvency of our entitlement programs to helping households across the country balance their checkbooks, reforming health care is necessary to getting health spending under control. Health reform will likely require significant initial investments, but, if done right, it can also yield significant savings in the near future. These initial investments can be at least partially offset by addressing current overpayments, waste, and fraud in the system, and ensuring that taxpayer dollars are spent in the most effective and efficient manner. For example, by adopting the Wisconsin model for health care delivery, taxpayers will save billions of dollars.

Again, thank you for contacting me. I look forward to seeing you at a listening session in the future.

Okey dokey- still no townhall in southeast Wisconsin.

What are you afraid of, Senator?

Are you afraid of the senior citizens that might show up and demand to know why you are cutting their Medicare by $500 billion? Are you afraid of the average citizen asking why it is you will be rationing their health care? Are you afraid of the children that may show up and ask why it is you are spending trillions of dollars into their future?

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