Every child in the United States should have access to adequate health care, regardless of whether or not their parents are fortunate enough to have employer-provided insurance or are wealthy enough to purchase private insurance. This commonsense statement is supported by a significant majority of Americans, cutting across party and ideological lines—Americans believe that all children should have health care coverage.
Unfortunately such popular wisdom is lost on President Bush who, on October 3rd vetoed a bipartisan measure that would have extended health care to some 3.8 million uninsured children, under the State Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Bush was able to muster enough support for his out-of-touch position within the US House, which failed, by thirteen votes, to override his veto.
Since falling short in their attempt to overcome Bush’s veto members of Congress from both parties have been working to craft a new SCHIP expansion measure (HR 3963). The new SCHIP bill seeks to find common ground with Republican opponents of the vetoed measure and to answer criticisms from the administration, while still promising a substantial increase in the number of children covered by the program.
Despite these adjustments the Bush Administration and the Republican leaders in Congress have remained steadfast in their opposition to SCHIP expansion and another Bush veto is likely.
The health of American children is too important to play politics with. Urge your member of Congress to support the expansion of SCHIP!
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