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Petitioning U.S. House of Representatives and 2 others

Reintroduce The Public Option. Call it MedicarePLUS

Now that Republicans have decided to challenge Health Care Reform on the grounds that a "mandate" is unconstitutional, The Public Option is back in play. But Corporate America has spent tens of millions to convince their useful idiots in the "Tea Party" to believe that ANYTHING offered by the government is bad, all the while promising to "protect Medicare"... a program even Tea Party members love, from those nasty evil Democrats (that created Medicare) from "destroying it". Unfortunately, even the phrase "Public Option" has been indelibly linked to "Big Government Democrats".

They say "framing is everything". Opponents of heathcare reform have already dubbed it "Obama Care", and despite being meant as a pajorative, even the mainstream media has taken to calling it that because the White House has yet to provide an alternative. If your opponent frames the argument for you in THEIR context ("Socialism", "death panels", etc), you end up playing Defense, never making any Progress.

This is incredibly counter productive and only hinders the debate.

We've heard opponents of healthcare reform decry it as "Socialism", while demanding that the government "keep its hands off my Medicare!" Sometimes, the simplest solution is the most elegant. Here is how to solve the healthcare debate in one simple step:

*Expand Medicare* to cover more than it currently does (plain Medicare only covers "pre-existing" ailments such as disabilities and old age), then allow anyone to "buy in" (helping to explain how it will be paid for). The infrastructure is already in place, it's a system people already know and love, and I dare any Republican to come out against Medicare. (Even their attempts to privatize it are couched in terms of trying to "save" it.)

It would allay the fears of Seniors being told their Medicare is going to be "cut" to pay for the new system, and reminds people that Medicare is *already* a government system that has been working well for years.

Call the new system "MedicarePLUS", pointing out that it provides MORE than existing Medicare. *NOT* something like "Medicare for All" (which implies it's the same old Medicare, leaving an opening for critics to attack the *existing* system).

It seems like such a simple solution that answers just about every nonsense argument we hear coming out of far-Right Town Hall protesters. And as I've pointed out here, it can be summed up in two sentences.


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