Canadians have universal healthcare, yet we still need health insurance. The US health reform debate is all about the cost of healthcare. The truth of the matter is that the aging baby boomers will demand the same healthcare in the US that citizens in Canada now enjoy. Universal healthcare will soon be the rally cry of “grey power” activists. It doesn’t mean private insurance companies will disappear, they will still be needed to cover costs that are not part of government programs.
With this knowledge, you may ask why then are the republicans in the states against the health reform bill? Of course, it’s not true that the GOP is against health reform; you doubt this? then check out Newt Gingrich’s blog and organization to promote better quality medicaid and medicare. The truth is that if President Obama and the Democrats deliver on their promise of healthcare reform the Republicans will become irrelevant to this debate for the next election cycle. And all they can run on is the negative of health reform.
Improving health care is a sensitive issue and one with huge political advantage for the party that brings it in. Look to Canada and Europe, the politicians and political parties that support and bring in healthcare improvements have gone on to rule for 10 to 20 years after. The politicians who champion healthcare are idolized and have praised bestowed upon them for generations after. This is why this health reform bill is so contentious.