I have to confess that I’m finding it hard to keep up with the Republican steamroller in our state. Last Thursday morning I wrote you all to reach out to members of the Senate Insurance Committee and let them know we opposed their “Just Say No!”
Bill opposing any kind of participation in the Affordable Care Act – including Medicaid Expansion – no matter what the cost to the state in health care jobs and federal dollars, let alone improved access to health care for low income North Carolina residents.
Just an hour or two later I had an email from North Carolina Justice Center telling me
that the Committee had already voted out the bill – with no debate and no opportunity for any expert testimony. I believe this is what is called a railroad…
And the same thing happened with the bill to reduce the amount and number of weeks of unemployment in the House. Another case where the General Assembly is rejecting federal assistance that can help the long term unemployed. And why? Because the NC Chamber of Commerce wants to lower their unemployment taxes. And the legislature and the Governor are buying their argument that lower taxes will mean more jobs. Where have we heard this before?
Let’s see if there is a way that we can stop this train.
Here are a few things you can do to make a difference this week.
Show up at the State House Monday night, February 4, at 6:30 PM to stand up for health care. The bill prohibiting the state from participating in the expansion of Medicaid will be heard by the full Senate. We need to make a visible stand against this shameful effort to deny health care to hundreds of thousands of North Carolinians. So come to the General Assembly Monday night at 6:30 PM. Meet outside the Senate visitors’ gallery. If you are a health care professional, pleasewear clothing that will clearly identify you as a medical professional. RSVP firstname.lastname@example.org
Send a Valentine to Governor McCrory. Ask him to Have a Heart. Ask him to think about the wellbeing of all the people of North Carolina – and support expansion of Medicaid as part of the Affordable Care Act. It’s good for all of us. For North Carolinians without health care. For hospitals and health-related businesses. For jobseekers. Send your valentine to:
Governor Pat McCrory
Office of the Governor
20301 Mail Service Center
Raleigh, NC 27699-0301
Write a letter to the editor of your local paper or news outlet supporting expansion of Medicaid. Check out our guidelines for letter-writing at http://www.durhamdemwomen.org/advocacy.html You can also use NC Justice Center’s letter to the editor alert that makes it easy to compose and send your letter: http://www.capwiz.com/ncjustice/issues/alert/?alertid=62351101&PROCESS=Take+Action
March with us on Saturday February 9. Forward Together – Not One Step Back! Is the theme of this year’s Historic Thousand on Jones St (HK on J) March to the General Assembly. Always an important event, an opportunity to stand up for the values we believe in, HK on J is even more important this year, when we are faced with a Republican leadership that seems determined to take us backwards.
Durham Democratic Women has a beautiful new banner for us to march behind as we mobilize to end poverty and economic injustice. Look for us near the McDonald’s at 10:00 AM or – if you want to carpool from Durham – email me at email@example.com
If you can’t march or write than read this week:
§ Check out the N&O Report on the Senate Insurance Committee Meeting on Medicaid athttp://www.newsobserver.com/2013/01/31/2646683/nc-senate-committee-moves-to-block.html
§ Read the New York Times’ devastating report on how the NRA is marketing to kids in Mike McIntire’s excellent article, “Selling a New Generation on Guns.”http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/27/us/selling-a-new-generation-on-guns.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0
§ Or for a more comprehensive history of the Second Amendment and Gun Regulation in the US see Jill Lepore’s excellent article in the New Yorker athttp://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2012/04/23/120423fa_fact_lepore
We are truly the only ones who can save our state. So join us. Stand up. And do what you can to make sure your friends and family and neighbors are ready to stand up, too, for what we believe in…for a state where we all can live safe, and healthy, where our kids and grandkids can get an excellent public education and where all of us can find jobs that pay a living wage.
It really all depends on us.
Sondra G. Stein
Durham Democratic Women