To the editor,

The worldwide COVID-19 pandemic is revealing to us and to the rest of the world how vulnerable our country is in two areas: access to health care and economic security.

For too many Americans, these key issues are connected. It’s a double whammy — if they lose their jobs, they lose their health insurance, too.  In a country with some of the highest health care costs in the industrialized world, adding 33 million newly unemployed to the ranks of the uninsured is a disaster for those people who need coverage and care, and for the system as a whole.

As we struggle to strategize our way out of this pandemic, it’s time to make access to affordable health care independent of employment. We need to provide a public plan that gives every single American adequate coverage, regardless of employment.  This universal coverage would put the United States among the ranks of all other developed countries.

U.S. Rep. John Katko and his Republican colleagues are doing all they can to undermine the Affordable Care Act (Obamacare) in spite of its growing popularity. Rep. Katko continues to bash “Medicare for All,” all while providing no alternative plan to getting health care to everyone. Does he just not care if we can’t afford the insurance that we need?

His opponent, Dana Balter, on the other hand, has a detailed plan to get to “Medicare for All” by carefully expanding the current Medicare system until everyone is covered. This starts by gradually lowering the age of eligibility, while allowing private insurance to continue in an increasingly competitive marketplace to bring costs down for everyone.

In this coronavirus crisis, we have many workers right here in Oswego County who lost their jobs and health insurance just when they most need it. Yet, our representative in Congress has not been able to protect us.

Dana Balter, who came closer to beating Katko in 2018 than anyone ever had before, offers voters the more thoughtful and substantive plan for providing universal and affordable health insurance to everyone. Unlike Katko, Balter doesn’t support a president who makes decisions about the pandemic from his gut, rather than based on facts and science.

A vote for Dana Balter in the June 23 Democratic Party primary is a vote for quality, affordable health care for all.

Mary and Tom Loe

Oswego

(1) comment

LAW

A well-written and thoughtful argument.

It was most gracious of the authors NOT to point out that Katko has no "skin and teeth in the game". He gets free (taxpayers get the bill) health care and isn't subject to the risk of losing it - unless he loses his cushy job denying health care to his constituents - which they are also paying for. It's what they call "a nuanced position"; Socialized medicine isn't bad for everyone, ("Some animals are more equal than others.")

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