March 17, 2010 (San Diego’s East County) –California’s healthcare crisis has dramatically worsened. From 2008 to 2009, nearly 2 million people in our state lost their health insurance amid recession and layoffs, according to the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. That’s a 28% jump over the prior year. Nearly one-quarter of all adult Californians lack health insurance.
In San Diego yesterday, approximately 200 people held a rally downtown calling on Congress to enact healthcare reforms to assure coverage for all Americans and halt insurance industry abuses that deny people affordable care.
Tracy Emblem and Francine Busby, both Democratic candidates for the 50th Congressional district, attended and spoke out in favor of healthcare reforms. Congressman Brian Bilbray, the Republican incumbent, has voted against the Democrats’ healthcare reform measures.
The House and Senate have passed differing versions of healthcare reform, with the House version containing a public option that was removed in the Senate version.
The two houses of Congress are now wrestling with how to resolve differences, as lawmakers face pressure on both sides of the aisle. Conservatives oppose both versions of healthcare reform bills passed by the two houses, while liberals voice concerns that the measures do not go far enough to protect consumers. Liberals have also criticized President Obama for backing down on campaign promises to support a public option.