The Progressive


A project of Common Dreams

For Immediate Release

Lori Lodes, (202) 368-6584

What Side of History Will Our Senators Stand?

Senate Finance Committee vote puts America one step closer to reform, now we must make reform truly meaningful.


we stand on the brink of making history and giving every American the
promise of health insurance reform that no longer leaves families at
the mercy of an insurance industry driven by profits and greed," said
Andy Stern, President of Service Employees International Union. "And,
as we stand at this pivotal moment, we must ask: Will our Senators live
up to the promise of reform they made to the American people or will
they stand with an industry that has turned their backs on meaningful

the Senate Finance Committee's historic vote on health insurance reform
today, Congress has made clear that the status quo is not an option. It
comes as no surprise however that Senator Olympia Snowe is the lone
Republican to recognize what every family across this country knows, we
can and we must do better.

"Now, Majority Leader Reid must bring a bill to the Senate floor that helps Americans like Roberta Howard. Roberta lost her health insurance after losing her job and was diagnosed with cancer just seven days later. Unfortunately,
the Senate Finance bill does not go far enough to protect Roberta and
other Americans from the crippling cost of healthcare."

The American people deserve a healthcare system that they can count on, one that guarantees:

  • Every American can afford to pay for their coverage,
  • Everyone shares responsibility, including business,
  • Reform is paid for but not at the expense of working middle-class families, and
  • People have the choice of a public option so insurance companies can no longer run roughshod over our families.

2.1 million nurses, doctors, security guards, and janitors will keep
working to make sure any health insurance reform legislation is worthy
of their support and truly makes healthcare affordable for all

this point, the only people who can stop meaningful reform from being
delivered are the sixty Democratic members of the United State Senate
who were elected by the American people on a promise that they would
stand for change, stand up to the special interests and stand proudly
for an American healthcare system that works," said Stern.

With 2 million members in Canada, the United States and Puerto Rico, SEIU is the fastest-growing union in the Americas. Focused on uniting workers in healthcare, public services and property services, SEIU members are winning better wages, healthcare and more secure jobs for our communities, while uniting their strength with their counterparts around the world to help ensure that workers--not just corporations and CEOs--benefit from today's global economy.