Saturday, March 20, 2010

University of Notre Dame College Democrats Make Final Push for Health Care Reform

Hello Dear Lefties,

We've been away from the blog for the past week or so due to spring break and wrapping up the last of our midterm papers and exams... but we've still been hard at work behind the scenes.  

As many of you know, health care reform is in it's final push, with President Obama hitting the campaign trail to rally support for this legislation.  The University of Notre Dame College Democrats have made it their number one priority this year to get health reform passed, having made over 6,000 calls since September--more than any other College Democrats chapter in Indiana, despite our relatively small size.

Unfortunately, we have heard some statements from Congressman Donnelly's office that have suggested that he may vote against this bill.  Upon hearing this, the College Dems, some of your Lefty's Last Cry writers, and other progressive student groups on campus got together at the last minute to urge Congressman Donnelly to do the right thing, and vote to pass health care reform when it comes to a vote this weekend.

We just shot out the following press release to local media outlets:
For Immediate Release

This afternoon, Saturday, March 20th Notre Dame students will be delivering a letter to the office of Congressman Joe Donnelly.

As college students who are about to face the harsh realities of entering the workforce and obtaining health insurance in the midst of an uncertain economy, the University of Notre Dame College Democrats, along with numerous other student groups, fully support President Obama’s health care reform plan and are urging Congressman Donnelly to do the same.

Many are quick to criticize the youth for their apathy in political and civic life. A direct cause of this apathy is politicians who use our time and resources to get elected, and then refuse to stand up and fight for the values that matter to our generation. Health care reform is such a value, and the progressive students of Northern Indiana cannot in good conscience allow ourselves to become yet another cog in the machine that contributes to political cynicism. We are hopeful that Congressman Donnelly will take into consideration the opinion of the National Catholic Reporter, 59,000 Catholic nuns, the New England Journal of Medicine, and most importantly, the voice of the citizens who fought to send him to Congress. We look forward to fighting to send representatives to Congress in November who will fight for us in return. Congressman Donnelly, vote for reform.

The College Democrats of Notre Dame have made more than 6,000 phone calls for health care reform since September. Election year political calculations should not stand in the way of the most comprehensive reform to our broken health care system in generations. This legislation will save tens of thousands of lives a year, all while reducing the deficit. We are confident that Congressman Donnelly will hear our voice and the voices of the thousands of citizens in the 2nd district who lack health insurance, and that he will do the right thing by voting for reform.
You can read the letter sent to Congressman Donnelly by the University of Notre Dame College Democrats in its entirety after the break...


March 20, 2010

Congressman Joe Donnelly
207 West Colfax Avenue
South Bend, IN 46601


Dear Congressman Donnelly,

As college students who are about to face the harsh realities of entering the workforce and obtaining health insurance in the midst of an uncertain economy, the University of Notre Dame College Democrats, along with numerous other student groups, fully support President Obama’s health care reform plan and urge you to do the same.

Many of us have met you at campaign events, voted for you, volunteered on your campaigns, and even worked in your offices. We have always known you to be a friend and supporter of the College Democrats. We understand and respect your honest concerns as to the abortion language in the final bill, but wish to remind you that we have many pro-life Democrats in our organizations as well—all of whom support health care reform.

As reported in numerous media outlets, the language in the Senate bill continues the precedent set by the Hyde amendment and does not allow for funding of abortion. Furthermore, research published in the New England Journal of Medicine has shown a strong correlation between near-universal health care coverage and a decline in the number of abortions. With the National Catholic Reporter and the National Catholic Health Association endorsing the health care bill, as well as a group of 59,000 Catholic nuns calling support for this legislation “the true pro-life stance,” we are confident that supporting this bill is in line with the Catholic faith that you share with much of our membership.

Health care reform is an issue close to the heart of our members, some of whom are victims of a system that excludes those with “preexisting conditions” in order to turn a higher profit. We have made over 6,000 phone calls in support of this legislation since September. Simply put, please do not let us down. Ask yourself the same question your colleague Congressman Ellsworth asked himself when he said the following: “I was sent here to look at all sides of the argument in a thoughtful manner and I knew that the status quo was no longer acceptable… I needed to answer only one question when deciding whether to support this reform: will this bill benefit Hoosiers? Put simply, in my core I know it does."

Because we are confident that he will continue to represent the values of all Hoosiers, we will devote ourselves wholeheartedly to electing Congressman Ellsworth to the Senate this fall. However, your recent statements regarding the upcoming health care vote leave us feeling uncertain, and potentially unwilling, to continue our support for your re-election.

Time and again, the youth of America plays a greater role in shaping the direction of our nation. Every Democrat now serving in elected office got there by relying upon the tireless effort of young Americans who came out to knock on doors, seal envelopes and make phone calls. Nowhere is this truer than in Northern Indiana, where the coalition of Northern Indiana College Democrats ran the only entirely student-funded and student-operated campaign office in the country during the 2008 campaign. On election night 2008, Chuck Todd of MSNBC even credited the large Democratic turnout in St. Joseph’s County to the incredible effort of the students in Northern Indiana.

Many are quick to criticize the youth for their apathy in political and civic life. A direct cause of this apathy is politicians who use our time and resources to get elected, and then refuse to stand up and fight for the values that matter to our generation. Health care reform is such a value, and the progressive students of Northern Indiana cannot in good conscience allow ourselves to become yet another cog in the machine that contributes to political cynicism. We are hopeful that you will take into consideration the opinion of the National Catholic Reporter, 59,000 Catholic nuns, the New England Journal of Medicine, and most importantly, the voice of the citizens who fought to send you to Congress. We look forward to fighting to send representatives to Congress in November who will fight for us in return. Vote for reform.


Respectfully Yours,


University of Notre Dame College Democrats
Progressive Student Alliance
Social Justice in American Medicine, Notre Dame
Minority Pre-Med Society
Campus Labor Action Project
Children’s Defense Fund, Notre Dame
Movimiento Estudiantil Chicano de Atzlán (MEChA)
Africa Faith and Justice Network, Notre Dame

12 comments:

Colleen Lowry said...

WOW! I got the chills when I read this! Great job guys! I especially liked:

“However, your recent statements regarding the upcoming health care vote leave us feeling uncertain, and potentially unwilling, to continue our support for your re-election. “

I hope this letter catches his attention and he realizes what a blow to his campaign it will be if he does not vote for healthcare tomorrow.

Kelly Smith said...

YEA ND! love this letter. absolutely love it.

Anonymous said...

How bout NO! Stay strong Donnelly and stick it to the lefties! We enjoy our rights! Don't force me to buy anything!

PS The stipulation against pre-existing conditions currently held by insurance companies is not to jacked up profits. It is to keep the baseline premiums for me and you down.

Knowledge is liberating. Vote No and keep us free!

ShamRockNRoll said...

To the idiotic anonymous commenter: You are a giant bag of fail.

This health care bill doesn't "take away your rights" read a book. (or the bill)

And yes, insurance co.'s do not treat preexisting conditions so that they don't have to pay for the treatment, therefore making more profits for their millionaire corporate executives and shareholders.

Tim Ryan said...

This letter is fantastic, and should be sent to all Democratic congressmen to remind them why we voted for them, and why we won't again if they don't live up to expectations.

As for our anonymous friend up there, I suggest you look up the facts of the bill instead of the "facts" of Glenn Beck and Sean Hannity.

Bill said...

Anonymous, your objections to the health care bill are entirely irrelevant to Donnelly's position.http://chestertontribune.com/Politics%20and%20Elections/democrat_donnelly_says_he_would.htm

If Donnelly read your comment (assuming he could decipher the message through the grammar) it would probably sway him more toward supporting the bill, by reminding him why health care reform is important in the first place.

I'm not sure what I found more ridiculous: the idea that a health insurance company (or any company for that matter) would do anything for a reason other than increasing profits (which is what companies are supposed to do) or that prohibitively expensive health insurance=freedom. I encourage you to write a letter to Joe Donnelly yourself just to remind him how weak the case against health care reform really is.

SHAMrocknroll said...

Whoa ShamRockNRoll, truth hurts but please don't take it own on me. Just make sure we can keep this vote as NO!!

Hmm...false. This bill stomps over a bill that was written over two hundred years.
1) This is a not a federal issue. Leave it to the states and the people.
2) The fifth Amendment. I enjoy being the judge and holder of my property

And unless you are willing to relinquish your misguided bitterness towards corporate America, you aren't going to accept this point either. To accept pre-existing conditions will be to increase their costs (you agree with this), in order to exist as a viable company this cost must now go somewhere else. These costs will be deferred to everyone else owning health insurance thus increasing the already expensive premiums.

The funny thing is that now that the premiums have been raised to cover the exponential cost of pre-existing conditions, less people can afford to have health insurance!

ShamRockNRoll, give yourself a pat on the back!

ShamRockNRoll said...

FakeSham,

You are clearly a whackjob. Thank you for making us look good.

xoxo,
Lefties everywhere

If you continue to post on our blog, pick an original name please. I don't want people accidentally thinking I forgot to take my meds. :)

Bill said...

I love our new troll. He's hilarious.

SHAMrocknroll said...

Sup yall. I'm peacing out of the blog. But thanks for helping me sort out my thought. Beautiful rebuttal Shamrock. Bill, cheers.

Anonymous said...

Worry not, cdems. He WILL vote for it.

ShamRockNRoll said...

VICTORY IS OURS!!!!!!