Local lawmakers sound off on health care co-opsNewsday
August 17, 2009
Rep. Tim Bishop (D-Southampton)
"Americans shouldn't lose care because of pre-existing conditions or go bankrupt trying to pay their medical bills . . . Including a public option would be an effective way to achieve these goals, but I am open to other good ideas if they would lower costs and increase patients' choices."
Rep. Steve Israel (D-Huntington)
"I want reform that protects people from insurance company abuses and bases medical care on quality instead of volume. If Congress considers legislation that favors health care co-ops or other alternatives to the public option, I will review the plan carefully to see whether it meets those goals."
Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford)
"The Obama Administration has finally realized that the American people do not want government-run health care and that the president's original scheme was overreaching and poorly thought out. Now the President's challenge is to fight off the rabid left wing of his party as he tries to put together a reasonable proposal."
Rep. Carolyn McCarthy (D-Mineola)
"With 47 million uninsured Americans, we need to work to develop a way of delivering high-quality health care as we move forward with an overhaul of our nation's health insurance system. Under the current House proposal, the public option would create a means to provide health care to the uninsured and small businesses, encourage competition with private insurance companies and decrease costs. Right now, because there is such a large pool of federal employees, they are able to negotiate and pay lower rates for their health insurance. The public option would provide Americans a similar opportunity by lowering the overall cost of insurance to those that do not have an employer-based option."
Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-Roslyn Heights)
"Unfortunately, the opponents of the health care bill seem to have succeeded in derailing the public option through their use of mistruths and falsehoods. However, if the political reality of the Senate prevents us from creating a robust public option, Congress must do everything possible to provide affordable, accessible, quality health care to every American, period."