For Immediate Release


Mike Hersh, Communications Director:

Donna Smith, Executive Director

May 30: 50 Cities Host Single-Payer Events

WASHINGTON - As the Obama administration calls for health reform to be done this
year, Progressive Democrats of America and other groups and people in
support of improved Medicare for all, a single-payer national health
system, will take to the streets in nearly fifty cities around May 30. 
Town hall meetings, protests at insurance companies, rallies in state
capitols, and vigils in memory of the 22,000 people who die each year
because they lack health insurance will be taking place across the

PDA supports HR 676 by Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) which would create an
expanded Medicare-type system to cover all Americans. The removal of
for-profit insurers from providing basic health care would create
enough savings, an estimated $400 billion a year, to fund health care
to all. 

"The injustice in our healthcare system must end, and Congress must act
now for real healthcare reform," said PDA Executive Director Tim
Carpenter. "The current healthcare system in the U.S. is doing serious
damage to the physical and financial health of millions of Americans.
The solution is not to subsidize an expansion of the current
dysfunctional system. That will just lead to more back-breaking bills
and more letters of denial. If Congress is serious about health reform,
they will support HR 676, the single-payer solution."

A 2008 study shows 59 percent of U.S. physicians now favor government
legislation to establish national health insurance.  This alongside a
recent CBS Poll showing 59% of Americans in favor of
government-provided national health insurance reflects the growing
support for single-payer healthcare.  Supporters are angered as leading
advocates supporting this solution are left out of the national debate
on health reform. 

Earlier this month, a total of 13 people, physicians, nurses and
activists, were arrested for standing up in the Senate Finance
Committee roundtable on health and demanding single-payer be
considered.  There have been 41 witnesses in the Senate Finance
Committee discussions on health reform, without one single-payer


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"It is notable that healthcare providers--doctors and nurses--are
willing to risk arrest in their pursuit to best serve their patients'
needs," said PDA Deputy Director Laura Bonham. "Health care is the
civil rights issue of this decade."

"The single-payer solution meets President Obama's three core
principles," said Carpenter. "It would reduce costs, guarantee choice,
and ensure all Americans have quality, affordable health care; it
provides far more in savings than any other option being considered."

Members of PDA, Healthcare-NOW!, the California Nurses Association,
Physicians for a National Health Program, and others are mobilizing for
the day of action under the umbrella of the Leadership Conference for
Guaranteed Health Care.

HR 676, the National Health Care Act, currently has 78 Congressional cosponsors in the 111th Congress.

Progressive Democrats of America is one of the nation's fastest-growing
grassroots political organizations; it has active chapters in 45
states. PDA is dedicated to reviving the progressive tradition of the
Democratic Party through grassroots organizing and working with elected
Democrats to advance peace, justice and social, economic and
environmental responsibility. More information is available at:


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Progressive Democrats of America is a grassroots PAC that works both inside the Democratic Party and outside in movements for peace and justice. Our goal: Elect a permanent, progressive majority in 2008. PDA's advisory board includes seven members of Congress and activist leaders such as Tom Hayden, Medea Benjamin, Thom Hartmann and Rev. Lennox Yearwood. More info:

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