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Public Option in Danger

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

By Sen. Mark Udall, Sen. Michael Bennet, and Gov. Bill Ritter
The Huffington Post

The public option will provide much-needed competition and choice for health care. And with the majority of Senators, Representatives, and the American people supporting a public option, its passage would seem inevitable.

But in fact, the public option is in real danger.

That's because the quiet threat of a filibuster effectively holds the public option hostage. Through the filibuster, Senators can delay debate on the public option indefinitely, preventing the Senate from ever holding a democratic, up-or-down vote on the issue.

On behalf of the people of Colorado, we've written an open letter to all United States Senators asking them to stand up for people and not the profits of the insurance industry. If you agree that the public option deserves an up-or-down vote in the Senate, then please take a moment to sign our letter below calling on members of the Senate to refrain from filibustering.

In a speech before Congress on the issue of health care reform just over a month ago, President Obama asserted that "I am not the first president to take up this cause -- but I am determined to be the last."

There is no doubt that we have an historic opportunity to reform our health care system, once and for all. We believe the public option is a crucial part of any real reform of the health care system.

But with powerful special interests determined to halt reform, the specter of the filibuster is set to derail our efforts....(Remainder.)

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