The new Republican majority in the U.S. House of Representatives is determined to pass a bill that would kill the healthcare reform bill that went into effect less than two weeks ago. The “Repealing the Job-Killing Health Care Law Act” is a symbolic bill—it’s doubtful the Senate would support it, and if it somehow passed the Senate, Obama is on record saying he would veto it.
Nonetheless, do you want your representative to vote for the bill to kill Obamacare?
Here’s what I’d ask my representative: Would you rather live in Delaware or Cuba? That may seem like an odd comparison. But if the point of comparison is life expectancy—could you expect to live longer in one place compared to the other? The answer is a tossup, according to the just-released American Human Development Report. Life expectancy in Cuba and Delaware are the same (about 78 years). One big difference is the cost of healthcare—Cuba spends 1/9th per person compared to the cost in The First State. (Delaware earned this nickname because it was the first of the 13 original colonies to ratify the U.S. Constitution).
Life expectancy in Alabama and Louisiana is about the same as Ecuador (but the South American nation spends 1/13th the money). Albanians live longer than residents in seven states, such as Arkansas, Kentucky, and Oklahoma, while spending 1/12th to 1/21st the money. These odd but telling comparisons go on and on.
The residents of 29 nations around the world live longer than Americans, even though the U.S. is rich and technologically advanced. All of these 29 have universal or near-universal healthcare. If we repeal Obamacare and thereby fail to insure millions of Americans, these sorry comparisons will continue.
What would your representative say if you asked: Would you rather live in Cuba or Delaware?
(Many thanks to Terry Gallagher for taking the reins of OurValues.org while I was traveling!)
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