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Monday, April 5, 2010

People over politics

As soon as President Obama signed the historic health insurance reform, 13 attorneys general began proceedings to sue the federal government to stop the law. And like every other step on the way to reform, politics are overshadowing the benefits of this law.

A recent report by Families shows the number of non-elderly people who will benefit from reform in each state.  Let's take a closer look at the states where the attorney general is suing, shall we?

Coming out on top of these states is Louisiana, where 574,000 residents will gain coverage by 2019. Not far behind is South Carolina. The attorney general in South Carolina is attempting to halt over 500,000 non-elderly state residents from gaining access to affordable health care by 2019.

Looking at the report, it is astounding how many people would be hurt if the attorneys general succeed in blocking reform in their state.

What I'm wondering-and probably you are too-is why? Why are these attorneys general trying to revert back to the status quo where, among other things, insurance companies can deny a child coverage due to a pre-existing condition? Why would they want to stop millions of residents of their state from gaining coverage?

The answer is simple: Politics. For these attorney generals, the politics of saying "no" outweighs the benefits that health reform will bring to the residents of the state they represent. It's time for these attorney generals to put politics aside, and people first. We've waited long enough.