So I recently returned to scrolling through an ostensibly progressive Facebook page that I had seriously neglected throughout much of the last year or so, the Wisconsin Urban and Rural Progressive Coalition, and I saw a post asking people to sign a petition from National Nurses United asking Rep. Gwen Moore to co-sponsor H.R. 1976, the Medicare for All Act of 2021. The post only had one ” like”. So I posted a comment asking the obvious question: how does a post on an ostensibly progressive FB page asking Gwen Moore to co-sponsor Medicare for All get only one like?
Only two people replied to my comment. The first commenter told me that people had simply given up. The second commenter, a constituent of Rep. Moore’s, said that thousands of signatures from her constituents had been sent to her a few years ago urging her to sign onto Medicare for All and that Moore had never even responded. Really? What’s up with that?
Perhaps even more curious is that the group billing themselves as a leading progressive voice in Wisconsin regarding Medicare for All, Citizen Action of Wisconsin, appears to have made no public effort to move Moore on this issue. Why? I’ll let the executive director of Citizen Action of Wisconsin, Dr. Robert Kraig, tell you in his own words from a video shot in July of 2019. At the roughly 13:00 minute mark Kraig mentions that the ” national nurses union ” is an ally of Citizen Action. At the roughly 25:30 mark Kraig says ” we” had a meeting with Rep. Moore and her concern is that the Medicare for All bills in congress aren’t paid for.
Fast forward to June of 2021. The Congressional Budget Office scored Medicare for All and estimated it would reduce overall health care spending. Let’s be clear: the issue of ” how to pay for it ” is a red herring, always was, and I strongly suspect that both Kraig and Moore know it. Dozens of countries around the world guarantee health care to their citizens and there’s absolutely no reason we can’t do it here.
Moreover, allies that Kraig mentions, National Nurses United and Physicians for a National Health Program ( Kraig gets neither name right in the video), have publicly endorsed Medicare for All, as has Citizen Action of Wisconsin’s parent organization People’s Action, ( Kraig manages to get that one right). And Rep. Jayapal’s Medicare for All bill has a spectacularly impressive list of congressional co-sponsors and endorsements from progressive organizations from all over the country.
And yet Rep. Moore has yet to sign on, and Citizen Action of Wisconsin, which is headquartered in Moore’s district, makes no public effort to persuade her to do so. Why? Or as Kenan Thompson might say: