Union activists demonstrate for health care reform

08/19/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday | Listen to this entire show:

Today one of the biggest actors in support of health care reform, organized labor, held rallies outside of Democratic Senator Bill Nelson’s District offices in Fort Myers and Tampa.

The actions were called on by the Florida Alliance for Retired Americans. Cheryl Schroeder is the Executive Director for the West Central Florida Federation of Labor. She reacted to the question being asked by some Democrats right now in the debate about health care: That is, should President Obama and Congressional Democrats continue to try to shape the legislation to appeal to Republicans, when many have recently gone on record as saying that they intend to vote against the bill, whatever is in the final product?

Randall King is from Hillsborough County. When asked if he’s concerned that momentum for changes in the health care system seemed to be stymied, at least according to new public opinion polls, Kind pulled out a copy of the Tampa Tribune from last week.

Flo Felicione is a retired teacher who worked in Hillsborough County Schools. She said because she’s on Medicare, her concerns were more with her children and grandchildren.

As the rhetoric has heated up on both sides of the debate, comparisons to Hitler and Nazis have been made. On his radio program today, Rush Limbaugh said that he wasn’t calling Barack Obama Hitler in the respect that he promotes genocide, but said there are similiarities with what he is doing and what Hitler’s party did in Germany in the 1930’s.

Conversely, Steve Sarnoff from Clearwater, President of the Communication Workers of America Local 3179, accused those who have come to be disruptive at Congressional Town Hall Meetings this month in similar terms.

A new NBC News/Wall Street Journal Poll finds many myths about the health care legislation are being accepted by the public. The poll finds 50% of Americans believe that undocumented immigrants will be allowed insurance benefits, though they won’t. The same number believe that women will be paid to have abortions.

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