Dec. 11, 2009, 12:00 AM
Just got off a national conference call with community organizers for Organizing for America, and wanted to share with you where things are at this moment.
Since last November 5, I've been hopeful about transforming our campaign into a people's lobby and folks, it seems we are, indeed, at the very beginnings of the kind of democracy many of us have always dreamed of. The work we've been doing has had an impact approaching that of the paid lobbyists.
On the call, we heard from people in Tennessee, New Mexico, Washington, Pennsylvania, Arizona, the Carolinas, Minnesota, Salt Lake, Nevada, and who had the most cogent and memorable commentary: our own lovely Tribecastani, Alan Howard.
OFA's national political director, Addissu Demissie, got on to tell us what's happening "on the hill" at this very moment -
- Senator Reid has handed several versions of the bill to the Congressional Budget Office for cost estimates. We don't have deets yet, but here are 3 points:
> Medicare would allow uninsured people to buy in beginning at age 55. (This would help allay the worry of Medicare going bankrupt.)
> The bill would create national nonprofit health plan, similar to the one Federal Employees now enjoy, administered by the Office of Personnel Management
And this is my personal favorite:
> force private insurers to spend 90 cents out of every premium dollar on actual healthcare (as opposed to taking our premiums to pay "healthcare management firms" to deny us coverage)
Again, we have to let it sink in: we would not be this close to re-imagining health care if it wasn't for us volunteers carrying the torch. Barack Obama could not have done it by himself. We did not elect him and abandon him to fight alone, and it's paying off. We, the people, are finally stepping into our rightful positions in this brilliant idea, of the people, by the people, for the people.
So, we don't have an emergency deployment right this minute. As I said Monday, we are taking this time to reach out to potential volunteers and there are events you can join in:
(or you can look at http://www.barackobama.com/)