Saturday, July 21, 2007

A Sign of Hope

A pro-life Democrat, Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio, and a pro-choice Democrat, Rep. Rosa DeLauro of Connecticut, have co-sponsored legislation designed to reduce abortions that is moving ahead in the House of Representatives. This is so much more encouraging than the typical polarizing rhetoric that keeps the two sides each on the high ground sniping at each other.

This is from Rep. Ryan's web site:
February 16, 2007: Ryan and DeLauro Reintroduce Bill to Reduce Abortions

26 Democrats Join Effort to Prevent Unintended Pregnancies, Support Pregnant Women, and Assist New Parents.

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) - . Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH), a member of the Congressional Pro-Life Caucus, and Rep. Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), a member of the Congressional Pro-Choice Caucus announced today that they have reintroduced common ground legislation to reduce the number of abortions in America. The Reducing the Need for Abortions and Supporting Parents Act (HR 1074) would create programs to prevent teen pregnancy, expand Medicaid eligibility for family planning services, combat sexual assault and expand adoption programs.

You can read the entire press release here

How amazing are these two quotes? First Rep. Delauro:
“By funding this initiative, we are offering policy solutions that promote life and support parents beyond the birth of their new child. We are affirming the need to prevent unintended pregnancies and to help women with the economic pressures that may lead them to choosing an abortion,” said DeLauro. “And of all the important goals this initiative can help us reach, perhaps the most important is that it helps move us all forward on this issue – beyond the question of the legality of abortion and toward actually reducing the need for abortion and providing critical investments for families.”
And now Rep. Ryan:

“It is our moral obligation to address those issues with which all sides agree. Whether you are pro-life like me or pro-choice like my friend Congresswoman DeLauro, the common ground we must build upon is our serious desire to reduce the rate of abortions,” said Congressman Tim Ryan. “This package accomplishes that goal by increasing or creating funding streams for programs that have been shown to reduce both unintended pregnancies and abortions. I also want to thank Chairman Obey for his longstanding leadership on this important issue and his willingness to work with myself and Congresswoman DeLauro.”

You can read the full press release at Rep. DeLauro's site here

And the good news is that this passed the House as part of other funding this week. This is the sort of culture war dovishness that this blog exists to support!

And finally, though some may write it off as nothing more than saying the right thing on the campaign trail, watch this video of Hilary Clinton's response to a question about abortions (at the recent forum hosted by Sojourners) and see if you don't find some small comfort in her use of the words "common ground."

Friday, July 13, 2007

And a Child Shall Lead Them!

Well, I may have settled on my candidate for President early in this election cycle. Susie Flynn seems like a perfect candidate for America today. She is straightforward and simple in her message, any nation that can find money to wage a war can find money to provide health insurance to all its children! Let the corporations commence to whine (along with the politicians they have purchased), I'll take the truth of simple logic.

Here are the facts (provided by the Children's Defense Fund:
  • More than nine million children in the United States—one in nine—have no health insurance coverage.
  • Every 46 seconds, another baby is born uninsured.
  • It costs less to provide health insurance coverage to children than to any other group of people.
  • The majority of uninsured children live in two-parent households and almost 90 percent live in families where at least one parent works.
  • Increases in private health insurance costs are dramatically outpacing increases in wages.
  • Ensuring that children have timely, affordable access to health care is a smart economic move. For instance, enrolling uninsured children in health coverage significantly reduces hospitalizations for preventable illnesses.
  • Uninsured children are more than five times as likely as insured children to have gone more than two years without a doctor visit.
  • What the United States spends on health care per person is more than twice the average spent in industrialized countries, yet we rank near the bottom among those nations in infant mortality rates.
  • Existing health care programs for low-income children vary widely, with different standards for eligibility, cost sharing, and benefits in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia.
  • Americans over 65 have access to health coverage under the Medicare program regardless of income, but children have no such guarantee, leaving millions of needy children without timely access to critical health and mental health services.
Oh, but Susie isn't old enough to run for President you say? Where does it say that? In the constitution that also guarantees the right of habeas corpus to all? Which is more important, that when a person is held by the government that he or she is charged with a crime and given a fair trial by a jury of peers, or that the president be at least 35 years old? Susie, and all the children, get my vote.

And this is just a start. Our health care delivery system is and will remain immoral as long as profit enters into it. It is time for a Susie!