02/07/10 — Health care, next: Democrats say it is not dead, but if it isn't, what do you want?

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Health care, next: Democrats say it is not dead, but if it isn't, what do you want?

As expected, the election of Massachusetts Sen. Scott Brown has not stopped the Democratic leadership from talking about the next step for health care reform.

Some of it might be "just talk," but what if it isn't?

Somebody soon is going to have to come up with a workable plan for dealing with the challenges the health care system faces.

There are Americans without insurance, and some who lose their homes and livelihoods because of medical treatments and expenses.

Costs are still going up and -- despite what some lawmakers claim -- there is still enough fraud and waste in the system to make anyone leery of a government-run anything.

And then there are those who truly are just innocent victims who lose their lives because they cannot get the care they need in a timely manner.

And no matter how few of them there are, there is no reason that should be a reality for any American.

Those are the realities of the system -- as much as we would like to pretend they aren't.

So, everyone is agreed, something needs to be done -- but what?

Washington has finally gotten the message that it is time to do something about the economy and jobs -- that there is where the priority lies for most Americans.

But even with that "loud and clear" message, there is still talk about resurrecting health care reform.

And when the time is right, we should.

But for now, we need to keep an eye on those who claim to represent the people but who still have not acknowledged the message.

This is not an issue that simply needs to be resolved in an expedient manner -- it is one that needs to be accomplished in an effective manner.

So talk about reform all you want -- and suggest a cure or two. But, for now, any legislator who does not focus on the issues that his or her bosses have directed them to consider needs to be told in no uncertain terms that if he or she continues to ignore the will of the people, he or she will be fired.


Health care reform is a topic to be considered now, but it should be acted upon when the economy is really on solid footing -- not before.

Published in Editorials on February 7, 2010 12:03 AM