Wednesday, March 24, 2010

A message from President Barack Obama

A message from President Barack Obama:

I'm writing to you on a great day for America.

This morning, I gathered with members of Congress, my administration, and hardworking volunteers from every part of the country to sign comprehensive health care reform into law. Thanks to the immeasurable efforts of so many, the dream of reform is now a reality.

The bill I just signed puts Americans in charge of our own health care by enacting three key changes:

It establishes the toughest patient protections in history.

It guarantees all Americans affordable health insurance options, extending coverage to 32 million who are currently uninsured.

And it reduces the cost of care -- cutting over 1 trillion dollars from the federal deficit over the next two decades.

To ensure a successful, stable transition, many of these changes will phase into full effect over the next several years.

But for millions of Americans, many of the benefits of reform will begin this year -- some even taking effect this afternoon.

Here are just a few examples:

Small businesses will receive significant tax cuts, this year, to help them afford health coverage for all their employees.

Seniors will receive a rebate to reduce drug costs not yet covered under Medicare.

Young people will be allowed coverage under their parents' plan until the age of 26.

Early retirees will receive help to reduce premium costs.

Children will be protected against discrimination on the basis of medical history.

Uninsured Americans with pre-existing conditions can join a special high-risk pool to get the coverage they need, starting in just 90 days.

Insured Americans will be protected from seeing their insurance revoked when they get sick, or facing restrictive annual limits on the care they receive.

All Americans will benefit from significant new investments to train primary care doctors, nurses, and public health professionals, and the creation of state-level consumer assistance programs to help all patients understand and defend our new rights.

As I've said many times, and as I know to be true, this astounding victory could not have been achieved without your tireless efforts.

So as we celebrate this great day, I want to invite you to add your name where it belongs: alongside mine as a co-signer of this historic legislation. Organizing for America will record the names of co-signers as a permanent commemoration of those who came together to make this moment possible -- all of you who refused to give up until the dream of many generations for affordable, quality care for all Americans was finally fulfilled.

So, if you haven't yet, please add your name as a proud health care reform co-signer today:

Please accept my thanks for your voice, for your courage, and for your indispensable partnership in the great work of creating change.

History, and I, are in your debt.
President Barack Obama

A BIG THANK YOU to all that helped support the passage of Health Care Reform!

Dear Dem Friends,

I would like to extend my sincere appreciation to all my friends and colleagues who have worked diligently since last June's push for Health Care Reform. I would also like to reach out and thank the many others that have been working for years and decades to help bring affordable universal health care coverage to all Americans. Many thanks to our partners in the Dem Central Committees, Democratic Clubs, OFA, HCAN and other heath organizations; our labor friends and the 350 organizations that are in support of the bill and the many others that have fought so hard, because we all believe health care is a right and not a privilege.

Over the last week and a half I have been traveling over the Central Valley with stops in Congressional Districts 18 thru 22 for the OFA Strategy Sessions Tour for 2010. I have attended rallies of a dozen to many and encouraged others to write, call and drop in the offices of our Central Valley Representatives; it has been a long road since June and nearly all of us have a personal story about health care. Last weekend OFA Staffers and Community Organizers from all over California met at a Summit in Fresno. At the Summit we all participated in the final push for Health Care Reform along with thousands of volunteers from around California -- keeping up the fight for the cause. We made thousands upon thousands of calls into key districts where our Representatives needed our support at times against "Tea Party" protesters. We pulled, within hours, constituents into rallies at Congressional offices to encourage undecided Representatives to hear the voices of some of the 32 million Americans that will benefit from Health Care Reform. OFA made over 500,000 calls into Congressional offices all over the nation in the last week alone.

We all have to agree It has been especially difficult in our Central Valley to combat and overcome the adversity we have faced daily by the opponents of Health Care Reform. Not only have we prevailed but we never gave up hope. Now my friends, as tired and as thrilled as we are in celebration of the good news, be proud as we have participated in and witnessed the historic passing of the "bill of our lifetime."

Lastly, a final thank you to our Central Valley Congressional Representatives, Democratic Party Leaders and President Obama.

Our job is not finished as you know, we must spread the good word on what Health Care Reform will do for the American people and support our Representatives that voted in support of us, the American people.

Patty Hughes

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Congressman Cardoza Says YES to Health Care Reform-Thank You!!!

Congressman Cardoza Released the Following Statement on his Planned Vote for Health Care Reform:
For Immediate Release: March 20, 2010

Contact: Mike Jensen (202) 225-6131

After decades of debate, the United States House of Representatives is poised to pass sweeping changes aimed at reining in spiraling health care costs and providing more control to patients and doctors in making critical and personal health care decisions. After closely reading the bill, meeting with my constituents and medical professionals for the past year, and taking into consideration all of the letters and phone calls my office received, I am pleased to announce I will vote in favor of the health care reform bill.

Among the significant benefits to our country and to those I represent:

    * It allows for portability, so that people can change jobs without losing their insurance.
    * It ensures decisions are made by doctors and patients, not the insurance company or the government.
    * It cuts the deficit by $138 billion in the first 10 years and $1.2 trillion in the following 10 years. The bill is fully paid for, costing $940 billion over a decade.
    * It prevents insurance companies from denying insurance to those with a “pre-existing†condition.
    * It prevents insurance companies from dropping a patient’s coverage once they are sick or providing caps on their benefits.
    * Small businesses will receive tax credits for providing insurance to their employees.
    * It protects the solvency of Medicare and eliminates the punitive “doughnut hole†on pharmaceutical coverage completely by 2020.
    * It allows parents to continue carrying their children on their existing plans until they are 26 years old, mitigating some of the economic difficulties facing young people.

This measure can stabilize health care costs, make health care more affordable for millions of Americans, help local and state governments which too often are forced to pay for the coverage of the uninsured, and allow millions of seniors and their families greater health care security. From the beginning of this discussion I have called for cost containment which must reduce the deficit, bending the medical cost curve that negatively impacts the country and our economy. This bill does that, along with its other significant improvements in our national health policy.


Patty Hughes
Central Valley Democratic Club
Stanislaus County DCC
Organizing for America
Regional Field Organizer
Congressional Districts 18-22

Thursday, March 18, 2010

National Health Care Reform - One Hundred Years of Delay.

Teddy Roosevelt, Franklin Roosevelt, Harry Truman, John Kennedy, Lyndon Johnson, Edward Kennedy, Bill and Hillary Clinton and now Barack Obama have each endeavored to bring a better Health Care system to the American people. For one hundred years the attempts have been blocked by the fear of change that fills the conservative heart. Today the fear remains but it will no longer deter Democratic determination to do what is best for America.
We are on the cusp of a better era in Health Care.

Where costs were soaring out of control our Bill will lower them, cut the deficit by over $100 billion in the first decade and by a trillion dollars in the second.

Where the Health Insurance companies denied coverage due to pre-existing conditions our bill will ban their abuses by law.

Where thousands died every year because families couldn't get care due to lack of insurance with our bill people will live because coverage will be expanded by over thirty million Americans.

Lower Costs, an end to insurance company abuses, and the gift of life to thousands every year.

The vote will come within a week. Call your congress member. Even if you have never made such a call in your life and are nervous about doing it, make the call. Tell your congress member to vote yes.

Vote yes for life!

Dale Parkinson

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Letter To Modesto Bee Editor - 3/8/10

Article Title: Arch checklist: No, no, no, no

Are we in Stanislaus County better off now than we were in 1999? The answer is "no." The Modesto theme of "Water, Wealth, Contentment, Health" can be used as a checklist to evaluate.

Water: Many complex, unresolved issues put water management in a state of crisis. Why? Lack of leadership and vision, partisan politics with extreme positions, coupled with climate change and drought.

Wealth: Not in Stanislaus County. Why? Lack of leadership and vision to shape a healthy economy, partisan politics with extreme positions, obnoxious greed of the rich and powerful pursuing misguided development, and of course the subprime housing scam that gave way to massive foreclosures.

Health: Not in the valley. Why? Lack of leadership and vision to create a healthy valley environment and partisan politics with extreme positions leave us with a valley with inadequate health care, poor nutrition and unhealthy air and water quality.

Contentment: No, not when the above three are in crisis. A recently released survey ranks Modesto as 161 out of the 162 cities surveyed. Wow!

Also, looking back over 10 years, I find that the county and city of Modesto have been dominated by Republicans. Maybe it's time for new ideas.



Friday, March 12, 2010

It's Official!

Just wanted to let you know that yesterday morning, March 11 - I formally filed my candidacy, paid the filing fee - and am now officially on the June 8th ballot for US Congressional Representative in California's 19th District.

Had a great in-depth Q & A session this past Tuesday evening in Groveland and another on Wednesday evening at the Turlock Democratic Club's meeting; I'm also gratified to have received the unanimous endorsement from the Fresno State Democrats for my candidacy.

We're in this together - and in it to WIN!