The Blues have joined the health care for all bandwagon in Minnesota. The state's Blue Cross Blue Shield is endorsing a bill based on the Massachusetts
model of achieving health care for all through compelling the purchase
of insurance, highlighting both a key strength and a key weakness of
the model. The mandatory nature of the law builds bridges to new
interested parties: insurance firms well positioned to benefit from a
law requiring that the public purchase their product.
The Los Angeles Times has a rundown of bills
passed by the legislature-- and for those wondering whether
progressives have an agenda, it's a pretty good illustration of what
could be done with a progressive majority. Many of these items may get
vetoed by Arnie, but it's still an impressive list. Here are the
In California, progressives have good news in droves. In addition to the passage of a single-payer system to extend health insurance to all Californians in a cost-effective manner, the state legislature has advanced several other key pieces of legislation.
Assembly Speaker Fabian Nunez and Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger cut a deal to significantly reduce emissions of greenhouse gases in California, making the state to put significant teeth into an effort to fight global warming across the board.
At the same time that a new study out of Massachusetts
reveals that tobacco companies are steadily increasing nicotine levels
in cigarettes, the fight to limit the health impacts of tobacco is
gaining new steam. Ballot measures will be considered in eight states this fall regarding tobacco. And in Virginia, where tobacco is king, Governor Tim Kaine is considering a ban on smoking in state buildings.
In the state with the largest number of undocumented immigrants in the
countries, state legislators in California are bucking the trend of
enacting punitive measures against immigrants and instead voted for two
proposals that actually seek positive solutions in integrating new
immigrants into the economy.
Yesterday, the California Assembly voted for a bill, SB 840, that would provide health care to all state residents under a government-run universal health insurance system, joining the state Senate which enacted a similar bill last year.
In the groundbreaking film An Inconvenient Truth, Vice President Al Gore makes an impressive case that it is now essential that the world act to prevent the potentially catastrophic implications of global warming. The film could not come at a more critical time. While the planet warms, Washington dawdles. The nation's political elite remains mired in a debate manipulated by powerful energy interests.