It’s been nearly a week since Sen. Russ Feingold’s campaign issued a press release asking Republican Senate candidates Terrence Wall and Dave Westlake if they’d fight for big health insurance companies or regular folks all across Wisconsin, and there’s still been no response from either candidate (or their campaigns) to answer the question. It’s a question that deserves to be answered, especially in the face of double-digit rate hikes in a number of states by Wellpoint, and while Sen. Feingold has been asking for answers on the steep rate hikes, both his opponents in the 2010 U.S. Senate race have been curiously quiet on the subject.
More than 540,000 Wisconsinites are currently without health care coverage, and neither Wall nor Westlake has put forward a plan to provide them affordable, quality health care coverage, beyond the Republican talking points about tort reform and “free market solutions.” In fact, Terrence Wall has said on more than one occasion that our nation’s health care system isn’t broken, while Dave Westlake has signed a pledge to work to repeal any health care reform bill passed by Congress should he be elected. In contrast, Sen. Feingold has made it clear he stands on the side of Wisconsinites who want real health care reform, saying:
“Fixing our health insurance system remains as important as ever because we have a broken system that has put health insurance companies ahead of Wisconsin families and small businesses for too long. After listening to the people of Wisconsin, it is clear that they want action and need reform that provides choice and lower costs for them and more competition and accountability for insurance companies. Wisconsin taxpayers and small businesses simply can’t afford the excessive premiums and higher out-of-pocket costs that are fueling insurance company profits instead of contributing to high-quality care for Wisconsinites.”
So here’s my question(s) for Terrence Wall and Dave Westlake:
How can they oppose a health care plan that prevents insurance companies from denying Wisconsin families coverage to due to preexisting conditions or when they change or lose their job?
What’s more, how can they oppose a plan that cracks down on health insurance companies imposing double-digit rate increases at a time when consumers can ill afford to may more for health insurance?