Saturday, October 10, 2009

Event: My letter to Sen. Dick Durbin.

Dear Senator Durbin,

I am a Michigan transplant who has been living and voting in Chicago for the better part of the last ten years.

I am writing you today about an issue that will supersede in importance the life of the auto industry; this is a bold statement for me to make as many of my family and many friends are or were employed by GM.

It is not enough to desire a public option in the effort to reform health care. We must *demand* it. Now I recognize that the diversity and recent development of the Democratic party makes consensus and coalitions difficult. But quite simply, this is what you were all elected to do, and your constituency is vastly in favor of the public option. I am reasonable, and I recognize that insisting on a public option will cause some risk to the entire reform initiative, and will entail short-term political liabilities. But this risk will be repaid with a robust and meaningful reform, just as immediate dips in the polls will be more than balanced by what will be increasingly seen as a historic long-term victory.

Not to be confused with the skeletal acquiescent "reform" increasingly represented by the proposal of Sen. Baucus.

A public option is essential. Any reform stripped of this option will not accomplish what must be accomplished, and the problem will resurface down the line.

Voters like myself, loyal liberals and Democrats with a variety of views have held out through the discouraging years of the Bush administration, when the slimmest of Republican majorities set a policy that we found as repugnant as it was regressive. With the strong numbers of Democrats in both the legislative and executive branches, this is a victory we insist upon.


Connor Coyne

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