Hiller Instinct: Healthcare
The Hiller Instinct: Hiller Instinct: Healthcare
There were balloons in the sky over the state house in April 1988--when Governor and presidential candidate Michael Dukakis signed the first universal health care law in the nation, a law he hoped to expand if he won the White House.
Gov. Dukakis, 1988
"How sweet it is to make history with you today here in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts."
But as Dukakis campaigned, the sweetness turned sour--the economy cooled...businesses battled back against the plan...and it was never implemented.
President Clinton, 1993
"This healthcare system of ours is badly broken and it is time to fix it."
After his election in 1992, Bill Clinton put his wife in charge of a push for a national health act.
Hillary Clinton is still criticized for her efforts, which ended in 1994 with her proposal killed by its opponents:
Sen. Clinton, 1995
"They are not just talking about dollars, they are talking about lives and they are talking about making a lot of our problems worse."
The biggest problem is the price of healthcare.
$10,000 to $30,000 for a heart attack.
Nearly $40,000 for a hip replacement.
More than $1,600 a day to stay in a Massachusetts hospital.
President Bush, 2003
"With this law, we're giving older Americans better choices and more control over the healthcare."
And look how the estimated cost of the President's prescription drug plan has gone out of control...from $400 billion in 2003 to $700 billion now.
The point is: people who say neither the state nor the nation can afford universal healthcare have a lot of numbers to back them up.
Before Beacon Hill is through, more people--but not all--will have health insurance.
That may not be dramatic, but it's progress. Healthcare is not a right. If you don't believe that, try paying your next doctor's bill with the Constitution.
Iím Andy Hiller, and thatís my instinct.
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