Dear Congressman Altmire,
I write to urge your support for the Weiner Single-Payer Amendment to HR 3200, which will receive a floor vote in September.
The Weiner amendment would replace Division A of HR 3200 with the text of HR 676, the “U.S. National Health Care Act,” sponsored by Rep. John Conyers. This would effectively transform HR 3200 into single-payer legislation.
Single-payer is a superior reform to HR 3200 in many ways:
* Single payer would provide universal and comprehensive coverage for all medically necessary services. Unamended, HR 3200 would leave millions uninsured or with skimpy coverage.
* Single payer allows patients free choice of doctor and hospital. Under HR 3200, insurance companies would continue to deny care and restrict access to services.
* Single payer pays for itself by eliminating $400 billion in insurance company administrative waste and redirecting it to care. HR 3200 requires $1 trillion in new revenue in the next decade.
* Single payer establishes proven and effective cost-containing mechanisms to ensure that benefits are sustainable over the long run. HR 3200 lacks effective cost controls.
The Weiner amendment presents an historic opportunity for Members to register their support for single-payer national health insurance as the best way to solve the U.S. healthcare crisis. It additionally will provide a vote that Members can stand by when approached by constituents.
While we recognize the political imperative to pass healthcare reform, it is important to remember that the purpose of reform is to ease the burden for all Americans. Only single-payer healthcare meets that goal—both medically and economically. The Weiner Amendment deserves your vote.