by Max Brantley
President Obama's health care legislation seems likely to be with us as the defining political topic until November 2014 at least. So, in addition to what I've already written today, still more:
Jim DeMint and other right-wing extremists will bring their anti-health care road show to Fayetteville today. Greeting them will be Arkansas residents organized under the president's Americans United for Change who've already seen benefits from the new legislation and expect to see many more. Already, they say, tens of thousands have benefitted in the Fayetteville area alone from new insurance, including for thousands previously uninsurable because of existing illnesses; drug discounts, and elimination of co-pays for preventive treatment under Medicare.
Details from the group on the jump. They'll be displaying a mobile billboard, shown above.
On Monday, August 19 at 5 PM, Arkansas residents from all walks of life who have been seeing tangible benefits from health care reform, from seniors to young adults to small businesses, will speak out against those who want to take away these benefits, like Jim DeMint, the Heritage Foundation and Congressional Republicans who are holding an anti-Obamacare event in town the same day.
What you won’t hear from the extreme partisans breezing through town is that if they had their way, thousands of young adults in Arkansas would be forced off their parents’ plans, parents of children born with pre-existing conditions would once again worry about reaching a lifetime cap or getting any coverage at all, and seniors would be left paying thousands more for their prescription drugs. If they had their way, middle-class families could once again be bankrupted and lose everything because of an illness, accident or medical emergency. Thanks to health care reform, women have the tools they need to stay healthy — access to preventive services like mammograms and check-ups without the co-pays that can add up to big bucks.
Health care reform is working. In fact, repealing the health care law is so unpopular, even in Republican-majority districts, they are less likely to vote for Republicans obsessed with undermining the law. Revoking coverage for people could be life-threatening in many cases.
Right here in the Fayetteville area:
· 9,800 young adults now have health insurance through their parents’ plan.
· More than 10,100 seniors receive prescription drug discounts worth $11.8 million, an average discount of $600 per person in 2011, $690 in 2012, and $990 thus far in 2013
· 118,000 seniors are now eligible for Medicare preventive services without paying any co-pays, coinsurance, or deductible.
· 185,000 individuals in the district — including 40,000 children and 74,000 women — now have health insurance that covers preventive services without any co-pays, coinsurance, or deductible.
· Up to 45,000 children in the district with preexisting health conditions can no longer be denied coverage by health insurers.
Press Conference Showing Republicans from Washington Who Is Benefiting From Health Care Reform
Hershey Garner, MD, JD
Autumn Lewis, University of Arkansas student
Jodi Nimmo, Mother and full-time student
Lisa Sharp, owner of Nightbird Books
David Whitaker, State Representative, District 85
WHEN: Monday, August 19, 5:00 PM
WHERE: Wilson Park Pavilion, 675 N. Park Ave, Fayetteville, AR