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Why Do They Hate Children? (At least ones from lower-income families.)

 After months of battle, from DC today is word that one of the most popular programs for children – the state children’s health insurance program – will not be expanded next year to reach tens of thousands of younger North Carolinians who currently lack health coverage.  Instead, a temporary funding extension will allow the program to remain open until after the next President is in office in March 2009.  (This will include enough money so NC will be able to cover projected increases in costs in the current program.) The reason?  President Bush and his allies in Congress, including every single one of NC’s Republican Congressional delegation, blocked repeated efforts to expand this popular program for kids over the last few months.

This won’t last, and here’s why:

1. Support for the State Children’s Health Insurance Program has been sustained and widespread – much more so than almost any other issue.  Bipartisan work meant Republicans and Democrats in the Senate secured a veto-proof margin in support of the program.  In the House, the vote was not quite enough to override, but was still 2 to 1 in favor with conservatives and liberals agreeing that SCHIP is critical to ensuring we do what is morally right—cover our kids.  This isn’t surprising.  72 percent of Americans support increased funding for SCHIP .

2. Together, the President and his allies killed legislation that NC Governor Easley, NC Democratic leaders, and many others worked with on with Republicans in Congress that targeted the lowest income kids in the nation and helped millions of families.

3.  An isolated President Bush will not keep us from doing what needs to be done in North Carolina.  In NC our SCHIP program, Health Choice, does exactly what we created it to do – cover kids from low-income families with high quality care at the lowest possible cost.  Our North Carolina values mean children and their health come first in our state and North Carolinians, regardless of party, are committed to making that true for every child.

4.  When you add up the moral urgency, the popular support, and the hard work of our Governor and other leaders, it’s clear SCHIP expansion will get done.  It’s just a question of when and who.  Senators Dole and Burr, along with the rest of the Republicans in our congressional delegation have shown where they stand on kids and health with their votes against this program.  They cannot continue to blindly follow President Bush’s lead forever.

10 Comments


  1. Jerimee

    December 18, 2007 at 5:39 pm

    Re: They cannot continue to blindly follow President Bush’s lead forever.

    If Bush and Big Oil don’t tell Elizabeth Dole what to do, who will? I don’t think her hearing aid goes up loud enough for her to hear working class North Carolinians.

  2. […] Here’s another interesting post I read today by The Progressive Pulse […]

  3. […] admin had some great ideas on this topic.You can read a snippet of the post here.After months of battle, from DC today is word that one of the most popular programs for children – the state children’s health insurance program – will not be expanded next year to reach tens of thousands of younger North Carolinians … […]

  4. Paulatics

    December 18, 2007 at 9:41 pm

    I recommend reading Paul Krugman’s new book, “Conscience of a Liberal.” An excellent economic and historical treatment of the current state of what he calls, “movement conservativism.” He devotes an entire chapter to health care in the US. See my website for details – http://www.paulatics.net — click on book club.

  5. Dallas Woodhouse

    December 18, 2007 at 10:44 pm

    nice title…why do you hate taxpayers who can’t pay their bills? farmers who loose their lands because of high taxes?

  6. Dallas Woodhouse

    December 18, 2007 at 10:45 pm

    oops lose

  7. NCNAMVET

    December 18, 2007 at 10:54 pm

    Just another means to deny benefits to illegal aliens.

  8. gregflynn

    December 19, 2007 at 9:04 am

    SCHIP has been a success. For one reason or another the participation rate among eligible children in families with income below 200% of the poverty level is about 75% and unlikely to go much higher than 80%.

    The Administration requires that participation rates exceed 95% before expanding eligibility to children in families with incomes between 200% – 250% of the poverty level.

    To achieve participation rates even approaching 90% requires resources the Administration is unwilling to support and, simplification of the application process. This is essentially a political move to limit participation which will result in fewer children covered.

  9. Adam Searing

    December 19, 2007 at 12:08 pm

    Dallas –

    Why not join the other conservatives backing this expansion? Surely taking a position for expanding health coverage options for kids in NC can’t be too far off what most of your base would like to see happen.

  10. Observer

    December 19, 2007 at 10:35 pm

    Senator Dole appears to be headed toward a serious nose job after Bush leaves office.

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