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What Happened to Health Care Reform?

What Happened to Health Care Reform?


With the Wall Street meltdown and bailout plan dominating headlines for the past weeks, America's troubled health care system has fallen off the media radar of election campaign coverage. But according to the nonpartisan survey research and civic engagement organization Public Agenda, the public still wants the candidates to talk about how they plan to reform the nation's health care system and be specific about how their plans may have to change in light of the current federal constraints. Some of the big questions the public is asking: Is it finally time for a single-payer national health insurance system? Is increased competition in the health care marketplace a better solution? Is the best thing just to extend the reach of the current system to help those without insurance purchase it? What are the overall costs to the nation of any plan? Public Agenda's issue guide 'Health Care: Your Money or Your Life,' part of the Voter's Survival Kit at, is in the hands of citizens across America, who are using its frameworks to weigh how the candidates' positions line up with the choices outlined in it. While the presidential candidates offer varying solutions to fix the health care system, they often avoid specifics about the pros and cons of their approaches. Public Agenda's Voter's Survival Kit makes these tradeoffs explicit. The Voter's Survival Kit issue guides are designed to help typical voters sort through the campaign rhetoric and make up their own minds about which candidates have the best ideas. The issue guides highlight fundamental facts voters need to know and explains more about the choices the country faces in down-to-earth, easily understandable terms, on the economy, the war in Iraq, climate change, health care, immigration, and taxes, spending, and debt. has recommended the guides on its Student News Learning site. Meanwhile, the Talking Points Memo blog highlights the Voter's Survival Kit in its exploration of the role of real issues in this election, and Everyday Democracy says the Voter's Survival Kit has 'has just the information we all need right now.' And the newly launched Voter's Survival Kit Facebook support group is growing quickly as active citizens across America share this resource with others. Each issue guide includes a brief overview of the topic, an evenhanded review of possible solutions and the pros and cons of each approach, both on an interactive web platform and in a downloadable PDF format. The Voter's Survival Kit also includes online discussion, links to candidate positions on issues and other sites with extensive information on issues, blogging opportunities, links to voting information sites, 'Smash the Political Spin' and 'Election Countdown' widget,s and more. Public Agenda says it has presented citizen issue guides focused on key election topics in every presidential campaign season since 1996. The 2004 election guides were downloaded by hundreds of thousands of users, according to the group. 'With 2.6 million visitors last year, is the site journalists, policymakers, educators, and average citizens who want nonpartisan, balanced information with thorough discussion of the pros and cons go for help to clarify the issues,' the group states.

30 Years of Out100Out / Advocate Magazine - Jonathan Groff and Wayne Brady

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