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Wednesday, January 21, 2004

Health Care

As someone who focuses on foreign policy and national security issues, I do not often think seriously about health care, nor do I blog about it.

Like many other citizens, I have to trust others to inform my decisions in these areas.

One person I trust on health care is Jim Reed, an attorney in Arizona. Last week, the Dean campaign released this statement to the press:
January 13, 2004

Contact: Press Office, 802-651-3257

Gore Lieberman 2000 Disability Outreach Director Jim Reed Joins Dean for America

BURLINGTON -- Dean for America today announced that Jim Reed, Gore/Lieberman's 2000 National Director for Disability Outreach, has joined Dean for America as the campaign's Disability Outreach Director. Reed will coordinate the campaign's outreach to the disabilities community and advise the campaign on disability and related health care policy....

During the 2000 presidential election, Reed coordinated all aspects of the Gore Lieberman campaign's disabilities outreach and represented it at the landmark November 1, 2000 Disabilities Townhall at the National Press Club....During the 2003 California Governor's Recall Election, Reed assisted the California State Democratic Party as the statewide disability rights attorney on Election Day. During 2003, Reed also acted as Disabilities Policy Advisor for the 2004 presidential campaign of Senator Joseph Lieberman.
Actually, this last tidbit could be a revealing early indicator of what's going to happen Tuesday in New Hampshire.

Not so long ago, Reed was endorsing Lieberman's health care plan on the Senator's campaign website:
Joe Lieberman's plan would make quality health insurance available to members of my community -- whether part-time employed, unemployed, on a fixed income, or a child in a family that lives near the poverty but does not qualify for state or federal assistance. Under the Lieberman health care plan, persons with chronic diseases would not face lifetime benefit caps, or be barred from individual plans because of pre-existing conditions. And no one would have to spend down their limited assets to qualify for Medicaid, or turn down part-time work because Medicare eligibility based on disability does not permit it.

Despite the many aspects of the proposal that are exciting, it is the extensive analysis of its funding that makes me believe it can work. People in the HIV/AIDS and hemophilia communities live in the real world, and programs with no hope of passage or of adequate funding do not excite us. The Lieberman initiative does.
Jim has promised to send me some material that I can use for this blog -- so look for more coverage on this issue eventually.

Friends who read this blog probably already know this fact from the Dean press release: "Reed holds a law degree from Columbia University, New York City, and is a graduate of the University of Kansas."

Rock chalk Jayhawk, KU.

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