August 1, 2006

Frist runs Bix, Whalen backs corporate, fundy agenda on health care crisis

As loathsome as I feel Sen. Bill Frist is, I have to give him props for apparently running the entire Bix 7 recently in absolutely brutal heat and humidity.

A QC Times piece by Wayne Ma explains that he wasn't sure he'd finish the race initially, but once he'd begun he "couldn't stop".

Of interest in the article is the proposals and policies supported by Mike Whalen in regard to health issues. He is even to the right of Frist on stem cell research, supporting the know-nothing stance of Bush when it comes to allowing funding of life-saving stem cell research.

A lot can be gathered by the problems with the health care system that Whalen chooses to ignore, such as the entire issue of lack of access by millions of poor and uninsured citizens, as opposed to those he feels are the most crucial which are only the issues of concern to the big money interests which currently dictate the lousy system we have.

He unsurprisingly supports further limits on the ability of average people to sue for medical malpractice, as well as advocating further intrusions and lessening of patient privacy by saying that our medical information and records need to be freely compiled and spread around to anyone who wants it. Not good.

Whalen is running against Democrat Bruce Braley.
Additionally, [Whalen said] the high cost and lack of interoperability of health information technology also prevents better-quality health care, Whalen said. Although health information technology could increase efficiency and patient safety, the cost versus revenue has prevented many from adopting the technology.

Braley said in a phone interview that the stark difference between the two candidates is that he would have focused first on why 48 million U.S. citizens are without health insurance — rather than discuss liability reform.

But on issues relating to medical professionals, Braley said he would try to address Medicare and reimbursement problems.

“Iowa doctors are getting penalized by providing quality, low-cost healthcare and their reimbursement rates do not reflect that quality care,” he said.

Healthcare, Whalen said, is an important issue because there are a lot of seniors in his district and many headed toward being seniors. In addition, it also will determine whether Americans can compete globally for jobs.

When asked what he thought of Frist’s position on federal funding for an expanded number of human embryonic stem-cell lines — a bill Frist came out in support of last week — Whalen said he respected Frist’s position but sided with the president when it came to whether the research should be federally funded.


At 8/02/2006 12:46 AM, Blogger tiz said...

Tom Vilsack kicked Frist's ass on Saturday. :)

The thing about Whalen I think people don't realize is he's the same as 99% of Republicans in that he's probably never had to worry about money. While what he's done with HOA is very, very impressive and he runs several very good restaurants, he also did all of this after going to Harvard and getting seed money for his restaurant from his father. I'm not saying there is anything wrong with this, but something tells me he's never had to worry about availablity of healthcare in his life. So it doesn't surprise me that he's more concerned with covering the asses of well-to-do doctors, especially if it affords him the opportunity to point out Braley is a trial lawyer. I remember similar shots being thrown at John Edwards when healthcare came up in 2004.

As for embryotic stem cells, this only goes to show Whalen is more Jim Nussle than Jim Leach. Let's hope he's in Moline at the helm of HOA come next January and not in D.C.

At 8/05/2006 8:50 PM, Blogger maybesomeday said...

Tiz I could not agree more. Let's keep Whalen in the kitchen where he belongs!!


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