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tv   Capital News Today  CSPAN  November 25, 2009 11:00pm-2:00am EST

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center. stanley greenberg, part of a panel discussing the obama presidency. from the jfk library and museum, terrorism and nuclear weapons. later, howard dean anddick armey -- and dick armey on capitalism. >> special middle east envoy george mitchell discussed a decision by the israeli government to temporary -- temporarily limit expansion in the west bank. he speaks with reporters about the middle east peace process for a half-hour. >> welcome to the briefing. as promised, the senator is here and he will give you an update on the recent enactment by it -- announcement by the israeli government with regard to a settlement. . .
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we believe it is the best way for them to live in peace and security. it is also in the national
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security interest of the united states it is urgently needed. the president knows achieving this goal will be difficult. he has said that he will not one of her -- waver in his pursuit in the middle east. for that reason, he has dedicated himself and his it ministration to the resumption of negotiations and to the creation of an atmosphere that maximizes thesuccess. the steps we have suggested to all parties to improve the atmosphere for negotiations are not ends in themselves. they certainly are not preconditions to negotiations. they can make a valuable
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contribution for achieving our goals of successful negotiations that result in a two-stage solution. that is why we urge the palestinians to expand and improve their security efforts and to take strong and meaningful action. it is why we have urged the arab state to take steps toward normalization. at the is what we have urged israel to stop activity. while they fall short, we feel the steps announced by the prime minister are significant and could have substantial impact on the ground. for the first time ever, an israeli government will stop housing approvals and on the construction of housing units and related infrastructure in west bank settlements.
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the israelis have said that the only exception will be a small number of public buildings such as school and synagogues within existing settlements. under the moratorium, those buildings already under construction will be completed. the number of buildings and a construction will decline. as each new building is completed, there will not be a new building started. implementation of the moratorium could mean much less settlement construction then whitaker if there is still a moratorium. -- would still occur if there was still a moratorium. this is not in agreement with the united states nor is it an agreement with the palestinians. the united states policy ponce settlement remained unaffected and unchanged.
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the president has said america does not accept the legitimacy of continued israeli settlements. we recognize that the palestinians and other arabs are concerned because israel's moratorium limit the effect of the moratorium to the west bank. these are concerned we share. as for jerusalem, the united states policy remains unaffected and unchanged. as has been stated by every previous administration which address this issue, the status of jerusalem and all other permanent that his issues must be resolved by the parties through negotiation.
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the united states has not accepted and disagrees with any unilateral action by either party. a jewish state of israel living side by side in peace and security within independent and viable palestinian state. today's announcement by the government of issue helps move forward toward resolving the israeli/palestinian conflict.
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the parties can mutually agree on an outcome that extends to conflict in reconciles the palestinian goals of an independent in viable state. let me say to all the people of the region and world, our commitment to achieving a solution with the two states living side by side in peace and security is unwavering.
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>> who thought we were going to say you are frustrated and resign. that is not the case [laughter] were going to keep at it. is this the best that you could get? are they going to try to sell it to the palestinians. anything has to include east jerusalem. >> i will address the latter part and then returned here for their comment. our goal remains for it to be in an atmosphere which can can see.
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we recognize the political situation is more challenging on both sides, especially in light of the aftereffects of the report. we have intended that negotiations will proceed on a variety of tracks, including high-level direct talks which set the tone, parallel talks about key issues and lower level talks. we think it makes sense to explore a relaunch of negotiation. we believe the differing views of the parties can be reconciled to the n in this situation. although their differences, my
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experience there is relevant. over a time frame of five years, i carried three separate sets of discussion. the main negotiations lasted for nearly two years. for most of that time, there was little or no progress in our efforts. the question asked me today i was asked hundreds of times there. after two years of saying no, both sides said yes. we had 700 days of the year and one day a success. i know the middle east is more difficult and more complex. no matter where the conflict is are what it is about, if you are serious about peace, you cannot take the first no, second no, or
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the hundred no. you cannot be deterred by criticism. he had to be persevering and determined. none of us have promised anything other than the total commitment to comprehensive peace in the middle east. that remains our commitment and go. >> given that you are hoping that this will launch final status talks, can you talk about any contact with a pad with president obama since he announced that he does not plan to run? do you think he is sincere about that? what has the united states been doing to convince him to stay on? >> i've had several meetings since then. we have encouraged him to remain in office and to work with us in achieving his longstanding goal
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of a two-stage solution. that includes an independent, viable, and contiguous palestinian state. we hope that he does say. we hope to continue working with him. >> the palestinian authority has accused the israeli offer, because it does not include east jerusalem. how can a person to go to the negotiations? >> we believed that the best way forward is to relaunch negotiations in an atmosphere in which they can succeed. we will encourage both sides to continue to take steps that will lead to that results and in able us to begin negotiations in a way that affords what i
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believe to be a reasonable and good prospect of achieving what the palestinians want and what we want. that is a two-stage solution with an independent and contiguous palestinian state and a state of israel living with secure and recognized borders. we are going to continue to pursue that objective. >> you have a 10 month window. do you think that is long enough? what would you like to see happen? what we do that the palestinians to do next? >> we would like very much to begin negotiations on the permanent status issues. as i said earlier, we think the best approach is a mix of contacts, direct, bilateral, and at varying levels.
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we hope that there will be substantial progress. my personal and fervent wish is that we will have a resolution of the issue of borders so that there will no longer be any questions about settlement construction. israelis will be able to build what they want an issue. palestinians will be able to build what they want in palestine. we think that negotiations should be started as soon as possible. all of the permanent status issues will be resolved. the people of the region can achieve their objective. i want to be clear that while
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this discussion has understandably focused on the israeli-palestinian negotiation , when the president addresses the vision of a comprehensive peace, he includes israel and syria, israel and lebanon, and the full normalization of relations between israel and all of the neighbors. we are going to continue to pursue those objectives at the same time. >> there is talk about terms of reference from the americans. they are changing some areas from the to a -- ba to a. are there any references that you are preparing? >> we have been focused in regarding terms of reference for
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negotiations. we have closed many gaps between them. while admittedly important differences remain, we have made substantial progress. we continue to explore those. i will pursue those, next visit to the region which will be in the future. it is part of trying to bring the party together. some of the points he mentioned represents steps that israel can take and we have encouraged action in that regard as a means of both steps to create an atmosphere toward conducive and did ago -- and good negotiation and as a way to move us toward the final result. >> i noticed you did not call
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this unprecedented. you came very close to that. is there anything different between what israel has outlined today versus what the secretary has labeled as unprecedented one shoes in the reason a few weeks ago. what about the agreement in the bush administration had with israel? >> if you look in the dictionary, that is the definition of unprecedented. but edward was loaded. you can close to unprecedented. >> nothing like this occurred during the bush administration. from 2000 through 2008, there were new housing construction
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started on 9000 construction unit. in the moratorium just announced by the government of israel, there will be no new housing construction sites during the 10 month period, none. there will be no approval of any housing projects during the 10 month moratorium, none. no israeli government has ever taken a step. nothing remotely like this occurred during the budget ministrations. >> he is pressing necessity that israel put in into the legal territories, which he said cost the viability of the geographic quarters. it must have east jerusalem as
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its capital. can you talk to what you think it is and this announcement today? do you think the palestinians should find some optimism or hope there? >> anyone who opposes settlement construction should take into account that under the moratorium announced today, there will be much less settlement housing construction activity then there would have been if there were not a moratorium. that is a fact. we will continue in our effort to persuade the party is that the best way forward is to enter negotiations with the united states as an active participant and supporter of the parties,
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encouraging them in their direct thoughts to move forward. we believe that is the best way to achieve what is the common goal of the leaders of the people they represent on both sides. to be able to live in peace and security. we will continue to pursue that objective vigorously and seek to persuade both sides that the way forward is through negotiation. >> there are many cynics that are saying that if washington could not get israelis to completely freeze settlements, how can they force them to go to the border. how you respond to this? what kind of assurances can you
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give the arab world that the negotiations are different than the one that we have seen multiple times. what can the arab government do to contribute? >> in response to an earlier question, we have asked all of the arab governments to join in the efforts in support of the arab peace initiative to take steps toward normalization of relations with israel. we have not asked anyone to take the final step of full normalization. what we have as is gestures, actions, statements, and movement in that direction. we are seeking a legally we have gotten a good response to a multilateral track in which
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several governments in the region would meet to discuss regional issues that they have in common, such as energy and water, which would follow the direct negotiations. it will not occur before them. we believe this would occur. this would operate with the benefit of everyone in the region. it would help to deal with these important issues that the office in common. weepie that increased contact -- we think that increased contact between political and non- political leaders, trade relations, and other forms of contact, all of that can form an ever strengthening web of support for the concept of human
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relations throughout the region. in response to your first question, of course there can be no absolute total guaranteed in advance of what is going to occur in and negotiation. i said earlier that you cannot take the first or the second for the hundredth no for an answer. that has to be clear. we have to encourage to see to persuade. it is to except -- accept endless conflict in the absence of hope for the future. nobody gets everything they
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want in and negotiation sticking to resolve the conflict. there has to be a willingness on everyone's part to give more than they want to give and to except less than the want to get. that applies to everyone in the process. it takes patience. it takes a courageous leadership. i believe that a can and will be done for one overall reason. it is not serve the interests of any of them. the leadership now should commit
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themselves that the next generation -- they do now have to live through what the present leaders have had to live through. >> you are making it sound as though the israelis have given a concession by the decision to temporarily [unintelligible] it is an agreement that had a meeting years ago during the bush administration. you are asking the parents to normalize the relations with energy. it is like pushing the -- putting the horse before the cart.
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the syrian government has welcomed so much of president obama. they have asked if there were in the road maps in the peace agreement for peace negotiations that are supposed to take place in the future. do you have any leverage plan with the steps could be taken? what is your goal? do you still recognize 338 and the resolutions for peaceful land? i need some definition. >> thank you. i will attend to provide it.
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we have been consulting extensively with israel and syria for several months. we are seeking a mutually agreeable basis for the policies to renew it. we have encouraged them to do so. both sides are well aware that president obama's vision of comprehensive peace includes is real and syria. we think that is an important part of the objective. i have met with president sallisaw and -- alasad and discussed with them. we will continue in that effort. until now, while they both stayed a willingness to get into them, their differences on how to do so have prevented them. the government of syria wishes
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to include the indirect talks which went through turkey last year. the government of israel prefers to go directly to direct talks without preconditions. we are attempting to find a mechanism on which both can agree, because we think it is important that they begin the process. we want them to do so. we want to support that effort in any way we can. that will continue. >> last question. >> you talked about the israeli/syrian talks. turkey has played a role in that. do you still see a role for turkey to play? >> i have had several meetings with turkish officials, including the president, prime
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minister, foreign minister, and others. we welcome the for their participation brita that is the decision for the parties to make. it will be up to then to decide how to best proceed. i told the turkish officials that we welcome that as one mechanism. we welcome any mechanism that will result. we hope -- and i intend to make this a part of my discussion in my next visit. we do want this process to proceed. not to the detriment or alternative to talks between israelis and palestinians. i wanted to make a very clear. these are not exclusive alternatives. they both must happen. we believe they both should
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begin. we will encourage the parties. we will do all we can to make that happen. thank you very much, ladies and gentlemen. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] quite eight weeks ago, general mcchrystal requested marchers be sent to afghanistan. they have now made a decision on afghanistan and will announce it tuesday night. you can watch a life at our web site with a sigh mall cast on c-span radio. >> this thanksgiving holiday we
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have a four days of book tv2 on tv. beginning thursday morning, we will focus on policy and public talks. watch the authors discuss their new books. learn about government contractors. you also see the recent miami book festival. from thanksgiving morning through monday morning, what book tv on c-span32. we can also follow it on twitter at happy thanksgiving. >> three original documentaries on c-span now available on dvd. it is a unique journey to the iconic comes of the three branches of american government. see the exquisite detail through the eyes of the justices.
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go beyond the velvet ropes. america's most famous homes. explore the history, art, and architecture of the capital. american icons, a three desk dvd says. it is 24 and 93 $24.95 plus shipping and handling. -- it is $24.95 plus shipping and handling. >> they called of cars to reject the health care bills. the president was joined by representatives of other supporters of the single payer government health care plan at a news conference in washington. this is an hour and 10 minutes. >> good morning. thank you for coming.
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i am the president of single payer action. it is a nonprofit organization. our mission is a simple one, secure a single pair medicare for on national health insurance for the american people. we are less than a year old. thank you for your support. with your help, we will reach our goal with me today is dr. margaret flowers. -- we will reach our goal. with me today is dr. margaret flowers. fellow with physicians for a national health program. dr. carol paris is a practicing physician from steny hoyer's
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district and maryland and a member of physicians for a national health program kevin zeese, executive director of prosperity agenda u.s. which was an initiative organization for the mobilization for health care for all. we are here today the day before thanksgiving to say in unison the bloated democratic health bill is in turkey. we need to start from scratch and pass single-payer health insurance for the american people. we will each make brief statement and then take your questions. i am speaking today for myself and on behalf of single payer action. the others will be speaking for their organizations. six months ago on may 5th, 29, margaret, carol come kevin and i were on capitol hill. we were in the senate finance committee hearing room. it was the beginning of three days of hearings to kick off the
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health care debate in congress. the room was packed with industry lobbyists of all stripes, health insurance, pharmaceutical, medical, the ama, you name it, they were there. senator max baucus the chair of the committee had scheduled three days of hearings on health care reform. bachus asked 41 health care experts to testify. not one was an advocate for single payer national health insurance. single payer is a simple, clear reform. the house single payer bill, h.r. 676 is only 30 pages long. bachus, obama and the democrats have taken off the table. and they've replaced it with a 2,000 page monstrosity. single payer by contrast is simple, and it works. under a single payer system, the day that you are born you get a medical card. with this card to get free choice of doctor and hospital anywhere in the united states.
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you pay no health care premiums to private health insurance corporations. you receive no bills. instead of the premiums we pay now, we would pay that amount or less into one public insurance pool. everybody in, nobody out. single payer saves lives, right now 45,000 americans die every year from lack of health insurance. under a single payer system, zero americans would die every year from lack of health insurance. why? because everybody would be covered. single payer covers everyone. single payer also saves money. we would place the hundreds of private health insurance papers with one public a year. in one stroke we perceive the $400 billion a year in administrative waste, profits and overhead. we would then use those savings to ensure everyone. the single-payer would use its tremendous volume power to drive down drug and other medical
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costs. dr. marcia angell every industrialized country in the world has some form of national health insurance where health care is a human right. we're selling basic health insurance for profit is against the law. every industrial country, industrialized country has the system except the united states. we are going to change that. national polls show that the majority of doctors and majority of americans favor a single payer system. that is why six months ago the four of us went to capitol hill. when senator baucus opened the first day of hearings and may i stood up and said excuse me, senator, why have you taken single payer off the table? why have you not allowed one doctor to testify for single payer? instead of hearing the south,
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bachus orders are arrested. one by one, margaret, kevin, carol and four others stood up and confronted bachus and one by one we were arrested and charged with disruption of congress congress to the end of this year. through that day, bachus and harry reid in the senate and nancy pelosi and steny hoyer have cobbled together incomprehensible legislation. it is convoluted. it is confusing. but one thing is clear. president obama and the democrats have cut a dirty deal with the health insurance and pharmaceutical industries. obama took single-payer off the table and exchange the health insurance and pharmaceutical industry supported his drive for, quote, reform. that's why harry and louise, once again paid for by the big forma are on the air. the passage of obama as health
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care legislation. there are 80 members of the house who say they support single payer. yet it was on the congressman dennis kucinich and eric massa who courageously stood up earlier this month and voted against president obama and against nancy pelosi and against steny hoyer and against the democratic leadership in the congress. kucinich called the democratic bill a bailout under a blue cross. massa said the bill would enshrine in law we the monopolistic powers of the private health insurance industry. single payer action today's column on the 88 single-payer supporters in the house and those in the senate, including senator bernie sanders and tom harkin to stop hiding, come out, come out, wherever you are, and joined with kucinich and massa and delete obama's health care monstrosity. start from scratch and pass single payer.
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on july 30th single-payer supporters signed the letter that anything less than a public auction tied to medicare rates was unacceptable. a few months later they backed down and accepted and even to jr public option, not tied to medicare rates. a public option that would only cover 6 million americans. option in the senate bill would cover only 4 million americans. in much of the puny relief will kick in until 2013. many people that need coverage now will be dead by then. who will stand with kucinich and massa and against obama, against obama and his health care monstrosity with? earlier this month congressman xavier becerra was critical of nancy pelosi for giving up too easily on the robust public option. according to politico, policy said i understand i have tire tracks on my back because it xavier through me under the
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boss. no, madam speaker, it's the other way around. bye taking single pay off the table, you through the american people under the bus. what about congressman john conyers? will conyers, the lead sponsor 676 stand with kucinich and massa? he said he was tired of rahm emanuel's approach of, quote, give us anything and we will declare victory. conyers said he feared president obama, quote, but just sign anything. but the question is will john conyers agreed to vote for anything? he did earlier this month. when will he break from obama? congressman don edwards is another so-called progressive for single payer. she took single payer off the table. she, too, said in july anything less than a public auction tight to medicare rates was unacceptable. she, too, then reneged on a
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promise and accepted the puny public option. then just last week, guess what? steny hoyer posted a fund-raiser for donna and ones, johnnies have shell on capitol hill. host come $5,000, pact, $25,000, individual, $1,000. congressman raul brough of all, the head of the so-called progressive congress started out supporting single payer. now he's in favor of the puny public option. he says he will strongly consider voting against the puny public option if it is watered down to the triggers. this is what the democrats are good at, capitulation. capitulate, capitulate. let's look at the other side for a bit of guidance. joe lieberman, the senator will shut down the senate if to the tropics have for the health insurance companies. who will be our joe lieberman? who will shut down the senate for the american people? once again, the people are ahead of the politicians.
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as the date reaches the end game, single payer forces all over the country are quickly moving against the democratic legislation. earlier this month, health care now, a coalition of labor unions and other single payer activists, adopted a resolution at its national strategy conference in st. louis, calling on congress to defeat the democratic legislation. dr. marcia angell early this month called on congress to do nothing instead of passing the democratic bill. as the house bill better than nothing she asked? i don't think so, she answered. it simply throws more money into a dysfunctional and unsustainable system with only a few improvements at the edges, and it augments the central role of the investor-owned insurance industry. the danger is that as costs continue to rise and coverage becomes less comprehensive, people will conclude we've tried health reform and it didn't work. but the real problem will be that we've really didn't try. i would rather see us do nothing now and have a better chance of trying and again later and then
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doing it right. that was dr. marcia angell. last week robert reich, clinton former secretary said the cut is 90% empty. most of us are stuck with little or no choice dependent on private insurers who care only about the bottom line would deny the claims, who charge more and more for co-payments and be we only need a courageous view in the house and senate. collier congressmen and senators to switch -- call your congressman and senator. 2022243121. tell them the democratic bill is a bailout. vote against the 2000 page obama
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bill. start from scratch. healthcare is a human rights. join with us in this historic movement to free the democratic bill. sign up. thank you. >> good morning. can you hear me ok? i am a pediatrician. i also served on the committee of the leadership conference for leadership of care. i am on the board of health care now which is a grass-roots organization. pnhp advocate for a single payer, national health system, also known as medicare for all.
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the perform groundbreaking research on the crisis and the need for fundamental reform. it contributes scholarly articles. it takes pride in providing information that can inform the legislatures in the public about the reasons why it is the optimal solution can inform legislators and the public about the reasons why medicare for all is the optimal solution to provide necessary medical treatment to everyone and the united states in a way that controls health care costs. pnhp doesn't, however, take a position on how congress members should vote on the legislation that is currently proceeding for congress. we do provide information to members about whether the legislation is likely to be effective, and how it compares to a national single payer health care system. we joined the many health care reform advocates across the nation who are disappointed by the health insurance reform legislation that is passing through congress. we, like you, are seriously
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concerned by the health care environment in the united states. we are saddened by the number of people, our patience, family and friends who are donner and because they cannot receive or for access to health care. we are saddened by the number of people facing bankruptcy or foreclosure of their homes and those who are suffering needlessly because they cannot afford or have access to medical treatment. the anticipated a health care debate this year that would focus on the trees stakeholders, the patient and those who take care of them. and so we were disappointed that those voices were silenced by the industries that have a financial grip on the media and on our legislators. we share the growing sense of desperation among patients and providers across the nation, desperation that has been heightened by the current economic crisis. like you we are hungry for change but we believe we should act based on evidence of what types of health reform have been most effective in the united states. and review of the current legislation repeals it resembles
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health care reform that has been tried and failed over and over at the state level recently. it is for the reasons i will list below we ask our religious leaders to start from scratch in order to create a national health care system that addresses the fundamental problems with health care in the nation and creates a system of similar quality to what is seen in other industrialized nations. number one, during the time that it will take for this health care reform to be enacted, which according to the house legislation is 2013 and the senate is 2014. tens if not hundreds of thousands of americans are going to die. number two, once the insurance reform takes effect people will still be left without health insurance. whether it is the 70 million who are going to be left out in the house version or the 24 million left out in the senate version
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we find this unacceptable. we know the actual number of uninsured people is likely to be higher than the estimates. and we know the people who do not have health insurance have a 40% greater chance of dying. members become a medical bankruptcy is will continue to occur as families will face out of pocket costs on covered -- on covered services of up to $10,000 per year. in addition to the cost of premiums and uncovered services. the average medical debt that drives a family into medical bankruptcy is $18,000. number four, people who are uninsured will suffer a further indignity of being forced to pay a fine which may be as high as 2.5% of their income. this is called criminalization of health care reform. number five, the number of people who are underinsured will increase with this legislation. people will be required to purchase insurance or face a penalty. but there is no guarantee that the premiums will be affordable,
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even for those who qualify for the federal subsidies. health insurers have already predicted that the cost premiums will rise because it required to stop the practices of not accepting pre-existing conditions and practice of rescission. a similar -- the public insurance is estimated to be more expensive than the private insurance. and a similar reform in massachusetts has resulted in a rise of patients who forgo needed care because they cannot afford the co-payments and deductibles once they take their insurance premiums. number six, people will continue to be confined to only receiving the quality-of-care that they can afford. instead of a standardized benefit plan that covers all necessary care, people will have to choose from a tiered set of plans. the least expensive plan will cover 60% of their necessary services and they will be responsible for paying for the rest. number seven, the legislation will not control health care costs and will in fact increase the waste in health care
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spending. the regulation of insurance companies which has failed to date and is predicted by industry whistle blowers to continue to fail will be expensive to enforce. and the exchanges will have to be created from scratch. the exchange would add another level of bureaucracy which in the state of massachusetts has added 4% charge to each insurance premium. unfortunately this legislation does nothing to reclaim the hundreds of billions of dollars and on necessary paperwork, administration and marketing for the hundreds of insurance plans we currently have. number eight, this legislation transfers hundreds of billions of dollars of public dollars to the private insurance industry. people will be mandated to purchase insurance whether they can afford it or not, and the insurance companies will benefit by having millions of new enrollees. it is estimated between 447 million to $605 billion,
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public dollars, will be given to the private insurers and the forms of subsidies. to help people purchased the defective health insurance products. number nine, this legislation protect the outrageous profits of the pharmaceutical corporations. the majority of americans will not see any improvement in the cost of medications, and in fact in light of the legislation that is passing through the pharmaceutical corporations have already raised drug prices 9% this year. in addition this legislation gives biotech firms a windfall tenure patent on the new pharmaceuticals. and finally, this legislation continues to allow discrimination based on age and immigration status. olver enrollees will be charged twice as much as younker enrollees and those will be required to prove their citizenship to qualify for the subsidies. those who currently do not have citizenship status will be required to purchase premiums without subsidies. so the current health insurance reform legislation that is
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passing through congress announced a massive bailout for the profit-making health industries which will enrich them and further increase their ability to lobby and influence legislators in the future. at the same time, patients will receive little in the way of long-lasting protection or ability to afford needed health care. this legislation is designed to fail and in the meantime will waste billions of dollars and delay the process of creating effective health reform. we call on congress to start from scratch. we believe that we have the resources in the united states to create a national health system that will improve the health of our people and of our nation. we believe that being ranked 37th in the world for health outcomes is unacceptable and that we as a nation can do much better than this. we believe that improving and expanding medicare to all people is the simplest and the quickest way to achieve our goal of universal and financially sustainable health care. as far as the health insurance
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legislation in congress goes, we do support senator sanders substitution amendment which would substitute public financing for the current complicated and wasteful patchwork of financing and we urge our senators to vote yes on the sanders substitution amendment. no matter what happens in congress this year, we will continue to build the medicare for all movement until we reach the day when all who live in the united states received the same health security as those who live in other industrialized nations. as those who see this as their and other board today that doctors have no interference by health administrators. we welcome all people who support health care reform to join us in this movement because together we will succeed. thank you.
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>> good morning. mauney -- i am the founder of board member of health care now. president obama stated several times over the past year that if we were starting from scratch in a single payer system would make the most sense. so we are here today to say that it's time to start over from scratch and pass single payer health insurance for the american people. the house bill, 3962, is completely inadequate and expanding coverage and controlling costs. we have heard it stated already by dr. flowers and cannot be overstated, this bill is essentially an insurance industry bailout. most provisions to expand coverage to not even going to affect until 2013, 2014 in the senate bill. after which it still leaves at least 17 million americans
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uninsured. the senate bill would have even less intact. leaving at least 24 million americans uninsured. instead of putting more band-aids on the -- instead of putting more band-aids on to the cover-up it continually festering poor hand lacking health insurance system, starting from scratch seems to be the only way to ensure that all americans can have equal access to care where everybody is an and nobody is out. just looking at the turnout of the more than 6,000 uninsured citizens who came to the forum in inglewood california this august to receive care from the remote area medical frequent it is clear many people, mostly poor, need more immediate access to care than what the bills are offering. thousands more have just recently been served this month by the national association of the free clinics with their one day operations in little rock arkansas and new orleans'
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louisiana. according to harvard medical school researchers, 45,000 people die annually from lack of access to quality medical care. we cannot continue to simply rely on the kindness of these tireless medical volunteers just because we have a system that neglects even the least of these among us. healthcare is a human right. nearly 61 years ago on december 10th, 1948, the general assembly of the united nations, of which i might add the united states is a member, adopted and proclaimed the universal declaration of human rights. article 25 of this great document states in part and i quote, "everyone has the right to a standard of living adequate for the well-being of himself and of his family including food, clothing, housing and medical care and necessary social services." this declaration was intended as
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a common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations. and now, decades later the united states remains the only industrialized nation that has yet to enact universal health care system for its people. it is clear that the american people want more. a "new york times" cbs news poll from september, 2009, found solid support for a government administered health insurance plan. the poll asked would you favor or oppose the government offering everyone a government administered health insurance plan. something like the medicare coverage that people 65 and older received. that will compete with private insurance plans. with the question posed in that way, 65% of the respondents supported the idea. with a majority of americans supporting the idea of a government administered health insurance program, which is exactly what single payer is, then why is it that, chris,
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those elected to represent the will of the people, cannot seem to translate the people's strong overwhelming desire into pragmatic application? .. the jurors are listening to the voice of the insurance companies who have given them millions of reasons to listen. the health insurance industries have given millions of dollars in campaign contributions to democratic, republican, and in the pen and members of congress. the house and senate bills are a direct to get to the private interests at the expense of health and financial common people. with these bills, it to become a federal crime to be an insurer.
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the insurance industry would be very thankful to have the 35 million new customers promised and delivered their mandated insurance and the hundreds of millions in taxpayer subsidies. that is what is being given with these bills. we say no to both the house and senate bills. start over from scratch. thank you. >> good morning. i am a practicing psychiatrist and a member of the health program. another said the voices that is
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missing are the voices of america's doctors. here is what america's doctors think. 59% of u.s. physicians now support national health insurance, up from 49% in 2002. . . from 49% in 2002 according to ase studying the annals of internal medicine april 2008. says the lead author and member dr. aaron carol, quote many claim to speak for physicians and reflect their views. and reflect their views. bad we ask the and found the contrary to conventional wisdom most dr. support the government creating national health insurance. why? according to the co-author,
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dr. ronald ackerman another member, quote more physicians feel our fragmented and for-profit insurance system is obstructing good patient care. as a practicing physician for 20 years, i see every day of the greed of the for-profit insurance and pharmaceutical industries have added a huge burden of financial anxiety and stress on to patients at exactly the time when they are most vulnerable, when they are ill. just this week a 62-year-old patient of mine told me that she and her husband lost their health insurance when their business of 45 years succumbed to the economic crisis. at 62 she is too young to qualify for medicare and she doesn't qualify for medicaid. they are living in a trailer attached to their car.
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she doesn't know how she is going to pay for surgery that she desperately needs next week. later in the day i saw a patient whose employer just switch plans. and i don't participate in that plan. so now she has to find another doctor. congressman hoyer, senator mikulski, senator cardin, you represent my state when i am asking you, how does this constitute good patient care? how is this cost-effective? when you tell your constituents if you like your employer-sponsored health insurance, you can keep it, what you don't say is if you hate your employer-sponsored insurance, too darned that. you are stuck with it. with the single-payer option,
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which a single-payer solution would like traditional medicare, everyone has the freedom to choose the doctor and hospital of their choice and i say made the best doctors and the best hospitals wind and prevail. that is competition i would support. in the toll isn't born just by patience. they are not the only ones who are stressed out and anxious. this toll is borne by physicians too. we have an epidemic of this heartened, discouraged and sometimes angry physicians. there misdirected anger has become such a problem to hospitals that hospitals are now required to have a policy for dealing with these so-called disruptive physicians. i believe that the disruptive physician is a discouraged
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physician. discouraged by a health care system that has become so intrusive, burdensome and demeaning that we don't practice, we don't feel like we are practicing medicine anymore. it is a system that is taken the art and the joy out of the practice of medicine. doctors are retiring early. they are taking disability in record numbers. or leaving the practice of medicine entirely to join the ranks of health care administrators who add to the cost of health care but not to the delivery of care. for me, personally, the antidote to discouragement has been active as some. i am proud to say i am one of the 17,000 members of physicians for a national health program. educating and advocating for a single-payer national health program. it is something that i do joyfully and in the spirit of compassion of good will for all
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patients, all my physician colleagues and everyone living in the united states. it is also something i do for my own peace of mind. pnhp, as margaret said is a wellspring of the evidence-based research that clearly demonstrates the flaws in the proposed legislation. i won't go over that again but i would encourage everyone who is listening to go to the pnhp web site, www.pnh bedaub and to president obama in 2003, when you were a state senator, you said you supported single-payer national health insurance. but you said first we have to win back the house and win back the senate when and win back the white house. well, mr. president we have done
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that. now as president, you said if i were starting from scratch i would go with the single-payer system. mr. president, happy thanksgiving. but please, don't pardon this turkey. it is time to start from scratch. thank you. >> thank you all for coming and being so attentive. my name is kevin zeese. we are trying to remake the economy so that people have more control of their economic lives and it is more democratized and more equitable and so my comments will focus primarily on the economic impact of this legislation compared to what single-payer would do for the country. we are also initiating organization for mobilization for health care and i think this
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kind of demonstrates how the congress is so out of touch with the american people and basic urgent necessities. the mobilization for health care we started a few weeks ago, six weeks ago and we focused on protesting insurance companies for denial of health care. we asked 100 people to step forward and go to insurance companies and sit in and risk arrest to make the case that insurance companies are not the solution to the problem but the cause of the problem. surprisingly almost 1,000 people live signed up and more than 150 people were arrested so here we have people risking arrest, protesting the insurance industry, thousands of people doing this will the congress is about to force them to buy private insurance quite a disconnect between the congress and the american people. not just the congress and the funders though. they put those interests first before the urgent necessities of the american people.
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the mobilization for health care which is that mobilized for health care dodd lord, if you will visit that and get involved has switched its years in the last week and many of our activists are going to their senator's offices and asking them to support senator sanders of man meant to put in place a single-payer health care system as well as an amendment he will put on the floor to allow states to enact a single-payer statement. her they are urging them to support these amendments and on december 10th human rights day, wheat tend to go back to our senators officers and make the demand and seek their response to highlight on human rights day that health care is the human rights. it is a birthright, it should be a birthright of everyone in the united states. one other example what before i get to the economics and how out of touch it is, harvard found 45,000 people die each year in the united states a baseball
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stadium full of people die every year in the united states because they can't get health care. harry reid's bill does not take effect until 2014. that means more than 200,000 americans will die while the congress waits to do something. how out of touch can a congress the? hauck incompetent and dysfunctional canoy congress beat, a democratic party be when they allowed 200,000 americans to die while they do nothing? when medicare was passed it was put into effect within a year. why did delay? 200,000 deaths on the hands of the congress. i am going to turn to the economic impact and i want to put the health care bills into context of the economy that is what most, the real economy most americans are living through and there have been a number of studies that i think will highlight that. first the census cannot. the census found a widening
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income gap as the poor and working-class take a big hit on the recession. here is a report on it. recession has hit middle and ports families cardes wyden the income gap between the richest and poorest americans as rippling ravage households. household income declined across all groups. people soarer across all groups but the sharpest percentage was for middle income and poor americans, those who don't have insurance by the way. there income fell down to levels in the 1970's so people in that thing on 1970's income in the 21st century. poverty jumped from any levin ten-year hi, 13.2%. another report from "usa today" analyzing the census differently, the incomes of young and middle-aged especially men have fallen off a cliff
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since 2000, leaving many groups poorer than they were even in the 1970's. poor then they were even in the 1970's. there is another study from the university of st. louis, and nearly half of all u.s. children will use food stamps during their lifetime. 49% of all u.s. children will be in a household that uses food stamps at some point during their childhood said mark rink, a poverty expert at the george warren school of social work at washington university. his steady entitled estimating the risk of food stamp use an empowerments with in the adolescent medicine found 90% of african-american children will be on food stamps at some point in their life. nearly one-quarter of all american children will be in households that use food stamps
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for five years or more. 91% of children of single mothers, of single parents will be in households receiving food stamps. 91%. another study says 14% of americans are now short on food, more than 49 million americans, one in seven struggle to get enough to eat. the highest level in 14 years. so here we are, these workers and their families are the new working for. they are unable to put enough food on the table for their children or even for themselves. they are facing incomes that are being depleted, facing job insecurity, bankruptcy and foreclosures ed record highs and what does the congress do? they say these impoverished americans which is a big group
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of americans, you are going to buy health insurance from these corporations that you hate, with ceos that make an average salary of $11 million a year. bucan put food on the table but we are going to force you to subsidize the in comes of the ceos. that is how out of touch our congress is. deaths, 200,000, people being forced to choose food over health insurance and the federal government making them criminals if they choose food. that is where the united states has come. at to that personal bankruptcy. hitting a four year high. here is a report from cnn, personal bankruptcies topped the 1 million mark for the first time in nine months. for the first nine months of the year, the first time it has done so in four years. personal bankruptcies were up 35% in 2008 according to the
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american bankruptcy institute. @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ @ >> -- most of them were middle- class citizens who had insurance. 2/3 up all bankruptcies in 2007, according to the american journal of medicine, most of them had health insurance. more than 3/4, 77.9%, were injured at the start of their illness and yet, they went bankrupt anyway. what does the senate or the house bill do to stop bankruptcy's? nothing, because denial of care will still exist under these bills. there was an effort to include in the bills, allowing in it -- an independent review and the insurance company denies the doctor-recommended care. but that was not included.
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people facing these health crises can be denied health coverage and there is no cost control. projections are 75% to 100% increase in the next few years. he last few years. so here we are again, the congress out of touch with one of the most pressing issues today, bankruptcy and the health care and the form they put forward will do nothing to solve it. what alternatives are there? there is a study that came out last week that i think is one that needs more attention and didn't get much attention the book that medicare compared to non-medicare patients in black, latino and poor households. they examine 6,000 people over a seven year period looking at cardiovascular disease in diabetes. what they found was even though we have gotten better at treating these diseases for those under 65 years old and their health actually got worse
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with these diseases because treatment was out of reach the wind you got to 65 and had medicare suddenly that inequality disappeared and people got healthier. medicare worked over all socioeconomic groups, all ethnic groups, blacks, latinos, the poor got healthier under medicare. medicare was an equalizer. it worked. that is consistent with how people on medicare field. studies have found 60% of those on medicare rented a nine or ten on a scale of positive values, nine or ten, 90 or 100% said yes we like medicare. in contrast to only 40% of those on private insurance ranked it positively in that way hand multiple surveys back this up. 68% feel their interests comes first when it comes to health care under medicare. only 48% of those on private insurance feel that way.
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staring us right in the face, 40 years of the successful health care program one that has made the united states one of the best in the world that treating cancer, one of the few areas we do better than most of the world. we talk about how bad we do in the world, but-- why? because those people are treated by a single-payer system, medicare. it works. so rather than taking up people like, what has been shown to be effective what is uniquely american, what is the low bureacracy of three to 4% compared to 21% for the insurance companies, does not create hospitals and doctors' offices, they ignore the obvious position, medicare for all. , for everybody. that is the solution. one other point in this is a broader point. i study came out of ritgers earlier this month that says it
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will take seven years for the jobs to recover in this economy, seven years. 2017 remake it back to where we were at the beginning of this recession. compare that to a study that came out earlier this year on the impact of single-payer health care-- single-payer system will provide a stimulus to the u.s. economy by creating 2.6 million new jobs and they infusing $317 billion in new business and public revenue and $100 billion in wages for the u.s. economy according to the findings of a report released earlier this year. a stimulus to the economy. a net increase of 2.2 million jobs that creates 2.8 comment you lose 600,000 insurance jobs and a net increase of 2.2 million jobs.
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that is as many jobs as for lost in 2008. single-payer would be a stimulus. rather then-- everyone recognizes the economy is a matsen rather than putting forward a solution that will control costs, create opportunity, they pick a bill that is going to anchor it, that is going to create new taxes. rather than choosing a single-payer that would be a stimulus to jobs they pick a choice that is going to be an anchor to job creation and reduce the number of jobs. it will ensure jobless recovery rather than job expansion. rabid than single-payer which would brings hundreds of billions of revenue to the system now we are going to spend a trillion dollar band-aid to cover a failed system. this bill, the democrats have made a dramatic mistake on. this bill needs to be defeated. we need to get on a single-payer path, defeat this bill and start all over with the obvious solution that stairs as in the
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face, one that is in touch with the needs of the american people, one that will prevent death and that is a single-payer system expanded and improved medicare for all. please join us as we try to remake the economy. we see health care is an essential step toward giving people control of their lives and join us at mobilize for health to challenge the senate to put in place some real provisions that can improve this bill if they don't do it, we should defeated. thank you very much. >> thank you kevin. carol, mikuak, margaret. i was listening to c-span this morning in a call-in show and they were talking about the war in afghanistan. apparently president obama is to send some 30,000 more troops over. the calls were overwhelmingly opposed, left, right, center, independent with and i think the
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same c-span audience is opposed to this democratic bill. the republicans, when they go on the floor of the senate and talk about this bill they hold up the 2,000 page stack and there's something real about it. nobody can understand it and nobody is going to read it. our bill is 30 pages. it is simple and we have compromised if you want to compromise on single-payer, dropped the medicare age from 65 to 55 and then dropped it to 45 and then dropped to 35 but what is going on now is out reaching the american people, both the afghan war in the health bill and those should be defeated but we hope to see an uprising this coming year on this. we have a few minutes for questions. yes sir, could you identify yourself? bead john reichert with "congressional quarterly" healthy. i was just wondering what chance do you see it turning centers
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sanders vote in the senate into a no vote in on the house side you mentioned two of 88 people who support single-payer. do you expect a no vote and how many more do you think you can pick up in the house? >> we have low expectations. first because the progressives in the house have waffled and when they said they would do something they did not stand by what they said so for example in the july 30th letter 54 progressives said that anything less than what they decided was a robust public option, public option tag to medicare, anything less than that was unacceptable so that is where they drew the line in the sand and two months later they said we can accept something less. grijalva is saying i will strongly consider voting against-- but he also signed the july 30 letter.
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how can we believe him? when i raised to a friend the possibility that sanders could be our joe lieberman and say no to this monstrosity he said sanders is no metzenbaum. we had a history of fighters in the senate, fighters for the american people. standards apparently is not that. >> your question really brings out is going to leave tens of millions uninsured and it is not going to control costs. it is not going to solve bankruptcy problems. it is not going to solve the problems of denial of care. it will cover up for a few years but the reality is all these problems remain so that is the practical reality.
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they can pass this bill but they are not going to solve health care with its do we believe we are going to continue with this there were various organizations and continue to mobilize and build an organized and the and we think single-payer health care is the solution that will actually solve the health care crisis in the united states and i think it will come sooner than people realize. her. >> the question i have is congress and the white house is basically said it is this bill or no bill, this plan or no plan. are we going to be better off without passing this bill? are we better off now then if the plants in congress got passed? >> thank you. that is the age-old question. what we have been the history in this nation is that very same struggle of do we pass something just to pass something that is going to help the few people because it is all we think we
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can accomplish and we keep accepting that saying we have done this before, we of the mandates and subsidies, we have done expansions overmedicate before and while it does help some people in the short term in the long term it has failed. each of these programs that fail within a matter of years. none of them achieve the coverage they anticipated the cheating in talking about states like tennessee, maine, massachusetts, or again so they all predicted these four solutions that would cover everybody in save money and within a matter of years they have failed. our concern is i think realistic one that if something is passed this year people will get the sense that we have done this, we have done health care reform and let's move on to the next issue and in fact this is not going to be fixed, so we want people to remember that no matter what happens this year we have not address the fundamental problems. we have not created a health
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system one that provides health care to everybody, one that allows doctors to practice and care for their patients. we have not enacted something that is going to save money so we need to continue working for medicare for all. >> beginning with the public option, a robust public option, what will that actually consist of? will it actually helps some people? have the break that down? what would actually have been there? husein. >> what that is why we call it designed to fail, is that those who were healthy, those who are working will be keeping their employer-sponsored insurance. they will be allowed to actually by the public option so most likely the public option is going to end up with those who have more medical problems.
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this has been kind of a pattern we have seen repeatedly in the united states, when you have public and private insurance is that are kind of both available, the private insurance is typically able to attract mostly healthy to avoid this shipwreck of the public programs pick up the sicker patients and struggle to be able to provide for their health care costs and the ultimately fail. the public option in the house is estimated to be available to about 2% of the population. it is estimated to be more and she-- expenses and the one in the senate is estimated to be available to about 1% of the population, who will be the sickest. >> you said that it would be basically the same money we are spending now and up costing the same while covering everybody.
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why hasn't the cbo moved on this? there have not been any cbo numbers as i understand. why hasn't that happened? >> that is an excellent question >> there have been studies that under a nationally funded system, we could cover all citizens. they met with leadership earlier in this year and requesting that -- requested that we have cbo scoring of single-payer so we could compare it with the legislation passing through congress. the request was denied. our bill hr 676 had not made it out of committee and we were denied that scoring. there was a request when representative anthony wienteer offered the opportunity to have a vote on the floor of the house, but we have not had eight
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full cbo scoring on single- payer. we know we perform much better than what is coming out right now. >> iowa co co-edit a blog. your organization organized a series of protests against the whole foods market strees. it did not seem to get much traction. i went to the one in logan circle. that is constituency that at least 80% of people voted democratic. you say to support this, it seems to be low on their -- as far as how they are excited
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about this. in light of that, how you see this passing? this passing if people aren't fired up about it? the first of all the whole foods protests, there were protest all over the country, indications that whole foods lost some business over the protests and people were very upset about it. for those who don't know the ceo road in op-eds in "the wall street journal" basically saying health care should not be a human rights and a lot of people were very upset about it. there were facebook web sites. we did call for a boycott and a lot of people participated in protest of round the country, so i think it was a successful protest. how do weech rigor mass action on single-payer? i don't led obama off the hook
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on this. a lot of people in the single-payer would say we have to push obama, we have to give him cover but obama, obama started in the middle. obama started with a dirty deal with the pharmaceutical and health insurance industry's. had he started with single-payer , there would have been a real coalition. there is a coalition now because the health insurance companies are going to fight everything and the pharmaceutical companies are going to fight everything but had he started with single-payer the line would have been clear and we could get heady real national education campaign about what this is about. amman he pulled his punches and i think it is a disgrace, and we have to start over. we have to start over and we have to be clear about it. >> democrats who favor single-payer seek-- they had met
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and some public moments that the public option is backdoor single-payer but that is not good enough. we want to walk in the front door and we want to confront the health-insurance industry had on. >> i would like to add to that that, when single-payer gets the media coverage that the teabaggers gatt, i think we will have a lot more about wellspring of enthusiasm. the single-payer advocates are not teabaggers. we are not crazy, screaming, yelling people. we are intelligent, compassionate people to use
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evidence-based research to make our points and unfortunately sometimes that is just not very sexy. thank you. >> on your question again, two points. first i would say the media if you go to prosperity agenda that u.s. and search single-payer you will see the research that shows overlapping boards with insurance company executives on media boards. you will see the advertising that media survives on with, from articles insurance industry so it is hard to get media coverage and that is a big challenge but on developing and moving, i would first off say even russell is being nice to obama. obama held a white house town hall on health care of right at the beginning and not only did we have a hard time getting single-payer in there, we got john conyers and representative
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the pnhp but neither was allowed to speak but he was allowed to speak? the first speaker the insurance industry, the last baker, the insurance company. it was obvious president obama was leading us down the path of a private insurance bailout, a private insurance base system and that is what we got but i see evidence of real growth in the single-payer movement, real activism in the single-payer movement. as i mentioned we started the mobilization for health care hugo to that site you can see what has been going on a run the country. it hasn't gotten immediate attention and i'm talking about demonstrations in dozens of cities at dozens of insurance companies were hundreds of people have been arrested sitting in an protesting the insurance companies. it shows the conflict from where congress is going and where the american people are. even without the media coverage we set a goal of 100 people
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setting in and we got 1,000 people willing to sit in. tin the motley expected and we thought 100 would be hard to get. ascetical 500 signing up and we have almost 5,000 signing up in just a handful of weeks. so i see this movement actually growing and getting stronger and getting more determined and i think we have all come to the agreement that what is going on in congress will not solve the problem and our organization has become more for the so i expect he will see this issue come back sooner than people expect and he will see the single-payer movement which is under the radar screen because of the lack of media attention, much stronger than you realize. [inaudible] definitely, shirk, definitely. the next phase is focused on congress and we are focusing on the democratic leadership in the senate because they are the ones who are making these, this health care bill and so
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particularly senator reid, senator durbin, senator baucus and dodd and harkin. these are the primary focus is the buyer effort so yes they will be pressured by their constituents at home. this week they are making the demand on december 10th on human rights day and they will come back and make it clear that health care is the human right in should be considered a birthright of all people in the united states and they will make that demand aggressively so keep watching that and hopefully you will visit mobilize for health, joy gnat and report on it. >> i am john craig, i work in the health system in fairfax and albania park to develop media tools for health care and for the politics of health care now. i just wondered in terms of, obviously there are a number of organizations and a lot of people interested.
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i just want to see if he might comment on how well you think right now the different organizations, how well coordinated they are in terms of working together in a unified way. you are always talking about the right wing noise machine and how beautifully coordinated the message is and things like that and i was just wondering how he would assess that, is there room for improvement and things like that? >> i would answer that by saying from what i have seen in experience with being introduced to the various-- there is cohesion and it is growing. i think as was indicated both by kevin and others who have spoken here there is growing momentum and growing awareness and education around that. there has been more coming together with in fact the health care knell conference that took place in st. louis, a variety of organizations being represented there are looking at ways to
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improve andy pfaff the messaging of the single-payer effort, so that as we continue to move forward because there is the intention of continuing this move down the court. it is not over by any means, and the matter what happens now. there is momentum building and we are looking at new tools in terms of media outreach and ways to engage community across the nation, becoming more inclusive of the first groups and organizations that recognize health care is a common ground issue. also with the u.s. social form coming up in june of next year in detroit that will be another point of further mobilization for the single-payer effort across the nation, so i do think from my own observation, of my own exposure in involvement that there is cohesion. it has room to improve and there is certainly the effort there on the part of all the organizations. as he can see today there are 45
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organizations here representative of this press conference and basically cure in solidarity recognizing we are committee for guaranteed health care. the conference is a coalition of organizations convened by physicians for national health program, the california nurses association, national organizing committee, health care knell, progressive democrats of america and numerous labor organizations, faith and community groups. we represent over 20 million people nationwide who support a single-payer national health system and we are growing and we anticipate continuing to grow. health care now, which a number of us are on the board of health care now, in national grassroots organization has single-payer act of this in those states across the nation in many of us
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particularly those of us who are physicians and physicians for national health programs speak regularly and are willing to speak so if there are states are groups around the country who would like to learn more about this or join the movement i urge them to go to health care-health care dock, if you go to you can speak there. we will continue to educate and grow. there is the issue of money. our organizations do not receive industry dollars, and so when you look at the work that we have done over the past number of years and the amount of, a small amount of money we have had to put towards that work and you look at the millions and millions of dollars spent to oppose health care reform we have come a long way and that also speaks to the power of our movement.
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>> one last question. the interesting thing about this movement is that there are a lot of grassroots groups that sprang up spontaneously. i'm from west virginia and in the eastern panhandle there's a single-payer group in west virginia and there are literally scores of these groups and the list a lot of them at the resourced page at single-payer a lot of it is spontaneous grassroots. their national organizations. as mikuak said we are coming together. the first thing would be to defeat this democratic bill and to have a single-payer advocates in the house and senate in the lead on defeating the bill so for the second round we have a leg up on the debate and not just let the republicans take charge in the defeated the bill. last question. >> back to the whole process thing, before the teabagger thing happen in august as you noted that the beginning of the news conference, a bunch of you were arrested at those hearings
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and what was a mistake to step back from that? the illusion that there is a settlement made. >> that was just a legal settlement and it was a legal settlement and it was pretty much a plea agreement with part of the condition of the plea, we did not plead guilty, but we said we would not protest in congress through the end of the year and then the charge would be dropped so that was the agreement on that. >> did you abdicate protests on that? >> we can get arrested on the hill. it is just the consequences mobile little more severe potentially but my view is we should focus on the democratic leadership in congress. they are responsible for this bill. they are the ones who created this bailout and if we are going to get arrested we should get arrested up there from now on in front of pelosi, in front of harry reid and we should hold their feet to the fire because
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they are the ones who are responsible for this bill and we won the defeated so that is where the attention should be. [inaudible] well, you know sam, it is not, it is pretty difficult to get 13 people willing to >> -- it did not trigger a wave of congress and we did not -- a wave of anger and we did not see a group of people coming up to us and saying, we want to get arrested. keep your eyes on the web site. ours is single prayer action .org and defeat this bill and build a movement for single payer. thank you very much. [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] >> tonight on c-span, former
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medicare administrator explains the medication -- medicare prescription drug benefit. then a discussion of the administration's education policy with new york city mayor michael bloomberg and education secretary michae blumberg. arne duncan. then the comptroller of the currency talks about regulation. >> on this vote, the yays are 60 -- the motion is agreed to. >> with that vote, the senate moves its health care bill to the floor. starting monday, follow the entire debate and how the bill will affect access to health care, abortion, taxes, live on c-span 2. on this morning's "washington
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journal", we talked to the george w. bush administration's head of the medicare program about the medicare prescription drug -- drug benefit which went into effect in 2006. this part of the program is 45 minutes. y was the administrator of medicare and medicaid services. in 2003 when medicare part d was passed into law he was very involved in that debate and its early implementation. let's begin with the definition. what is medicare part d? guest: it is a relatively new program began in 2006. it covers seniors on a voluntary basis for drug benefits. it is about $50 billion per year federal spending. 90% of senior citizens are covered one way or the other. about 34 million seniors citizens are in a prescription drug-only plan that has been added on.
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about 9.5 million senior citizens are in the medicare advantage plan that includes hmos. about 8 million more senior citizens keep their old health plans and the government pays a subsidy to their former employer. the remaining 10 million, about four million have opted not to be covered and the other at 6 million are in v.a. or some other program. about 10 million lower income senior citizens have subsidies. about half of them essentially pay nothing and have free coverage. host: we would like to focus on medicare part d. you're most welcome to call and ask questions. if you are not enrolled in the program and do not understand how works and want to know its impact -- and we're also happy for those who have been using it for the past two years to tell us of your experience, or
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ask questions. first of all, in the current debate we have been hearing about changes to medicare. is anyone discussing changes that would affect medicare part d? guest: very little. there's some language in the house bill and some debate in the senate about closing that hole. it would expand coverage and give them more gap coverage. we can debate whether it is good or not. that is really it. there are some with amendments to what changes -- would like to ginger more structurally. but for the most part the plan is popular. some want to spend more, some want to spend less. but considering how controversial it was in 2003, it has turned out to be abroad level of public support. the changes should be fairly modest. host: 90% of those eligible have decided to enroll? guest: yes, that is right. another 6% of the senior
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citizens are not in because of v.a. coverage or other federal programs. host: when you presented the plan to congress did you anticipate the rohmer rate would be this high? guest: yes, i think we do. you can debate how much money we should have spent, but when you give people a significant subsidy -- $1,000 per year for every senior citizen on average -- people are getting better purchase of drugs, and most get about $2,500 subsidy. it gave people a significant new benefit. people got much better coverage, much more subsidized. host: one of the critiques i have read is that unlike the va system of medicare cannot negotiate with drug companies for the price of drugs. guest: i think that the government does negotiate for drugs. it hires contractors.
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by 34 regions we send a pharmacy negotiator -- here is the money. we will give you this much depending on income level, call us next year. if you spend $1,400 you win, if you spend $69, you lose. the data healthcare plan is an aarp and they negotiate aggressively with drug companies. the engingeneric rate is up 96%h is exactly what we wanted. they are all philosophical issues. is the government better off taking its money giving it to a private contractor who has financial incentives to negotiate? i love my old agency, cms, but the government partially decides
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what every hospital and doctor will be -- are philosophically do not think that is right. i think we should have a well- regulated private capitalist making those decisions rather than the government. my old agency does the best they can to fix prices -- but generally it does not work. this will go on the next month in the senate on the overall debate. there are legitimate views on both sides. host: what is the implication for both cost and health for the use of generic drugs? guest: there are 6 million people who pay virtually nothing. that is originally of what this plan was designed for. five years ago said there were senior citizens not able to afford rent, to eat. it was terrible. it was my number one goal.
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the primary goal was to help poor senior citizens who are really hurting. that was the huge russian now. there are no four people in the donut hole. that donut hole in effect is a wealthier people. it basically has one spectacularly positive effect -- you might design it differently and the singers on january 1 wonder how to avoid that donut hole -- they asked to switch to generics. it has a lot of people money. the behavior response to it has worked out well. people ask their doctors and pharmacists have to switch to generics. senior citizens are very cost sensitive. wealthier senior citizens do
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have a done a tall and it drives more rational behavior. host: given the increased discussion about the federal deficit, this medicare part d was not paid for in the federal budget -- is that correct? guest: that is true. i worked for president bush ii as well as the first president bush before that -- there was a big tax cut and then an enormous surplus. it is hard to remember that now. the debate was that republicans wanted to spend -- mines version was not to spend more than $400 billion over the next 10 years democrats want to spend $1 trillion. we did a modest version of the public debate back them. but at the time we had a massive surplus. in hindsight maybe someone not again. at the time the issue was whether to spend $400 billion
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over 10 years or more. now when you have a $1.50 trillion deficit -- in the biggest advocate for coverage, but look at this deficit. host: the donohoe was a way to save money? guest: it was designed for two reasons. we had a budget that had to be acceptable to the president and congress. it was designed to save money. we would have put a hole in there anyway to make people more cost sensitive. it is a huge, new benefit people did not have before. i think it has worked well. the cost which we estimate it at the time to be $400 billion over 10 years -- by all accounts those estimates were high. it is roughly $260 billion over the first 10 years that it will cost.
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host: most news stories so that it is one-third less than the original cbo estimate. the last question before we go to calls. given the cost, was there ever any discussion of means testing for eligibility? guest: it is means tested. if you are relatively low and come, you basically pay nothing. your premiums are free and there is no deductible, co-payments. as you go further up there are various levels of subsidy of to about 10 million people. that is said about 50% of poverty. above that people pay the full premium. host: there is a lot there to begin to. we welcome your comments or questions for mr. scully who was the head of medicare when this
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law was passed in 2003. what you doing now? guest: i fully spend half my time in new york at an abysmal firm. i'm a lawyer here in washington halftime. i have two very different jobs. host: let's take a first call from san diego. this is matt on the caller: democrats' line i would like to know the effects of having the medicare and actuary told the that the congress should not know the true cost of medicare part d -- threaten to be fired when he told congress. should we have confidence in medicare part d? guest: that is an old debate. it never happened. the medicare actuary does a good job. he is a smart guy. at the time the politics were intense and he did. we passed a bill that was scored at the time by the only one who
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counts -- the congressional budget office. the $400 billion to not to be two-thirds less, so no one is right. -- it turned out to be one-third less. the actuary is a staff of about 50 and they do a great job. host: princeton, new jersey, of your sends us this e-mail.
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guest: i'm surprised. that is the debate. i think all the cities showed that the cost as been significantly lower for medicare part d then getting them from canada. the average citizen save themselves tortured their rulertold hundred dollars per y. could there be people who have certain drugs or plans -- there are usually three tiers -- they each have affect some people -- overall, it has been a big winner for senior citizens. host: do you believe the program is simple enough for people to understand? guest: it is complicated. when you try to make different levels of subsidy and make it
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competitive, which we tried to do, a tightly regulated public program that created intense competition -- 1500 medicare part d plus plans over 34 regions, it is complicated. i'm biased. i was involved in creating it. the first new federal entitlement program that has entitlement program that has come >> -- it came in sickness to delete a low cost because we set up intense incentive -- it is the first to come in below cost. that is exactly -- it is worked out to be better than i can imagine. guhost: on the republican line. good morning, andy. caller: i understand in the
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current house and senate bill, there is an incentive to change -- the government will have to pay more. i understand that companies will have to take a financial hit when the bill is signed into law. can you comment on that? guest: in the effort to raise money to pass this bill, whatever the eventual cost iseventual $900 billion -- one of the little-known offsets in both the senate and house bills, there are 8 million people, the bill was called the retirement subsidy -- it subsidy -- if you work for john deere or general motors and you're happy with their drug benefit, we created a 28% tax-frees subsidy to say
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to employers we do not want you to drop your employees and keep up your existing plan. $800 per head, paid through an employer. it is obviously cheaper. congress took away the tax-free portion of that subsidy. the average employer is going to the average employer is going to lose about $200 per person their subsidy level. the assumption is that it will raise taxes. i think that it may backfire. if you take away a big chunk of their subsidy of more people drop their plans. i don't think it is something congress balked through much. it will most likely cost us more money rather than save money. if you are a large employer,
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most will figure this out that it will lose a large chunk of money for their retirees. host: the next call comes from north carolina on the independent line. caller: hello, i have been on the plan for three years. i'm getting ready to cancel this year. after reading their newest plan for this year i consider the plan i am with a bait and switch. it started out -- it is up 400% from the first time i started. -- from when i started. i have not even gone into wh the deductible has gone up. it is $300 for this year and only applies to this year. i can get generics from walmart for a three-month supply.
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i don't even need a generic. i am 71. i can get the expensive drug that i need a broad for one- third of the cost compared to the prescription drug plan on medicare part d. i'm fed up with. i would rather pay the full cost than give the drug insurance co. another penny of my money. guest: obviously, it is a voluntary program. and people do not want to join in, they do not have to. the data shows that gives a significant subsidy to each person. the deductible does go up and it does apply to name brand drugs as well as generous. host: anthony sends us this message by twitter.
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guest: uh, you know, it is a complicated issue. i don't have any particular view on it. both administrations have questions about how to control the importation of drugs from overseas fromfda safety. i don't think it would lower drug costs. senior citizens are large chunk of drug consumption. senior citizens could good prices on a relative basis through medicare part d. host: new york, eleanor, on the democrats' line. caller: i don't really recognized program efficiency and cost-reducing benefits that mr. scully per claims.
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i feel i was much better off on street medicaid because now have to pay an up-front monthly premium in addition to the drug costs when i go to the drugstore to pick them up. so, i have two different costs now whereas before i just paid at the drugstore. i have had similar problems because my case worker told me because i have medicaid i did not need this medicare part d plan. i initially pulled the plug on it. then when i went to get my heart medication i could not get it. so, it has been very complicated. i asked the pharmacist -- am i the only one who has been having this problem? and they? oh, no, so many people are having this problem. i think there was much better off when i just had street medicaid.
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guest: medicaid is 50 different state programs, so it depends. where you depends generally, if you are on medicaid and were on the dual eligibility, you probably should not be paying any co-payments or deductibles or premiums. if you qualify before i'm a little surprised that you're paying anything. look, it is controversial, complicated, has been extremely popular. i was at the healthcare staffer for president bush i, was involved one catastrophic was repealed in 1988. it was my first job in the first bush administration. i spent a lot of time trying to develop another drug benefit.
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is it perfect? i think not. is a better than what we have before 2004 which was nothing? i think that it is. could you spend a lot more money? obviously, you could. i think it is a spectacular benefits for low-incomeçó citizens, and a very good one for those who are not. it is complicated, but i think it works. i think it works partially because of the design. that complicated design makes it competitive and low-cost. host: this is a story from "the loss angeles timeos angeles tim" 60% of the plans will charge deductible from 15% from 2009. fewer plants will offer coverage in the donut hole.
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more than two million people involved in extra help may face a premium of about $10 if they do not switch to a plan that qualifies for full premium subsidy. finally, more than 1 million people in extra help will be randomly assigned to a new plan in 2010 that may impose a different restrictions on their drugs. guest: you just gave great examples of confusion. host: yes, and at a point -- seniors in my own family find a more challenging to process all of this. guest: each state has a program , and non-profit consumer advisory group largely funded by medicare grants for you can phone to get. get they have a tremendous amount of information. you can call 1-800-medicare and
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they will connect you. host: november 15, the enrollment program -- is that and you will? guest: yes, it is. from november 15 through december 31 is the open enrollment time every year. if you are already in a medicare part d and you want to switch, there is a time of 45 days after. you have the ability to switch. host: but if you do nothing? guest: you automatically stay where you are. in 34 regions -- and this keeps down the cost, each region has an average of 45 plants. the government puts up the bid in each region for the benefits. the ones that come in below the mean, if you are low income, you
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can join them for free. every year let's say that your with one company or another -- if in the region in your price goes up above the mean, some seniors may have to pay more and others pay. a pay it is also because the clients do not want to lose those senior citizens. it keeps the bidding down. every year the whole thing gets drawn up for bid and if you are not among one of the half of the lowest cost in your region, people have to pay more. that is why low-income seniors have to move every year. it saves the government money. but it does cause confusion. host: detroit, on the republican line. caller: good morning. yes, a get injured about 12 years ago when i broke my neck at work. the retired me and i did get my
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social security, but what a done understand -- i did not ask for the medicare part d and i ended up getting stuck with it. i just got my thing in the mail yesterday about coverage. i do have blue cross blue shield and medicare a, b, and d and these other benefits i'm supposed to be receiving and in pain for my interest. i only make $17,000 per year on income between my pension and my social security since i was injured. now they sent me something yesterday about costs. now, like i take eight prescriptions per month for seizure medicine and everything else. i'm paying the co-pay anywhere
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from $7 up to $27. medicare or sdrs, whatever they call that -- they pay $1.20. you are saying that in low- income, but i am paying triple the amount that was pain when i was only on blue cross. guest: it would be hard to know without understanding your individual circumstance. host: so, what should he do? guest: if he is on disability he may have coverage through his employer, so it may not be medicare. host: if he calls that 1-800 #. guest: yes, call in michigan and ask them to talk to your non- profits committee to help senior citizens make these choices. they are very good. host: pat sends us this e-mail
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at the heart of it. would you settle something for me? host: who is right? guest: both. at the time we had a giant surplus. president bush, now controversially -- but at the time it seemed appropriate to have a giant tax cut. we were looking to fix what we thought was the greatest social injustice at the time. that what senior citizens having to make tough choices between medicine and rent. it has been a spectacular benefit for them. it was not funded at the time because it did not have to be. congress had big surpluses. some republicans would probably have liked to have spent even less and many democrats wanted to. spend to
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at the time i think it was the right thing to do. it has come in way under budget. -- and many democrats wanted to spend even more. the reason it is not that controversial, the changes will likely be modest because it has worked well. could you debate? it was a different context at a different time. host: the final vote in 2003 was 204 republicans, 16 democrats -- 189 guest: you know, it is unfortunate. i do not miss politics too much, and i have friends on the democratic side and the left, and, unfortunately, senator kennedy passed away. rockefeller. i worked with them the and when it gets to debates, it tends to be about the next election as well as substance. many democratic friends said we
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did the right thing on the medicare part d plan. we never would never gotten to universal coverage. i have been here since 1980, when i started working in the senate, and the biggest issue was seniors getting this. we never got to the question of universal coverage if we had not fix the issue, so many democrats told me that they thought we did the right thing and that it worked out well. at the time, they did not want a republican president to get a victory on health care, and that is everybody getting into their trenches and throwing grenades back and forth, and i have some disagreements with some in the house and senate in the health policy debate, but i have long been a fan of the coverage. it is the right thing to do. i would do exactly the way congress is doing it, but there tends to be a reaction that if the republicans are doing it and you are a republican, they are
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wrong, and if you are a republican doing it, the democrats think you are wrong. people beat each other up around it has gotten tougher which is host: unfortunate in nexunfortu. host: our next guest will be here to discuss in the does. guest: his one of the nicest guys in the world. i worked a lot with them in the bush administration. caller: by the way, there was a projected surplus. at that time bush decided to give tax cuts to the rich and take astute two wars. if you do not take all generic drugs -- and 90% of the country does not, then that is a guaranteed revenue stream for pharmaceutical companies who lobbied hard for this bill at the highest price possible.
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because the government cannot compete in the private sector. but the government will subsidize at a very narrow criteria for this to cannot afford it. that is government support of the private sector which i strongly object to. as a republican i think you do not like the concept of having the government financed the private sector. guest: well, i did not do taxes, and i did not do wars. the the drug companies never liked this. there is a lot of perception that this is lobbied for and negotiated by the drug companies. i did a lot of reform when i was in the cms and was not particularly beloved by the drug companies and still am not. anyone who looks at this rationally that senior citizens get a better deal -- and prices are lower than in 2005 -- is
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unavailable. there are many other ways that you could have done it, but it has clearly worked, and clearly not in a way that companies like it. volume of drugs has gone up for senior citizens. the companies have done well on volume, but per prescription the margin has come down. we want and senior citizens to have more access to drugs then they have had. host: this is your says they don't know what this idiom of donut hole means? guest: about 6 million donut hole did not have -- for next year you have a $310 deductible. plants can vary. -- plans can vary.
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in general, and for next year there will be a $310 deductible. you will still pay 25% of the cost and medicare part d will pay 75%. the garment pays 75% up through about $2,800. through the donut hole, the garment pays nothing. you pay it on your own. then you get to the catastrophic cap which is about $6,400 in total costs. when you hit it that for those who are really sick and have high drug costs -- above that you pay 5% only. there is a big gap in their at of about $3,600 in the middle where you get the benefit of
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your group purchasing through the plan, but if you're not low- income you'll pay the bulk of the costs, all the costs. 75% of the senior citizens never had that. 25% of senior citizens to hit that donut hole gap and there has been discussion of closing that. but senior citizens are smart and do not want to hit back to hole, so they start to move to generics. in many cases they can save a significant amount of money. hey, people react to the dollar incentives quickly. the goal to begin with was to help poor people most. can you argue that subsidies could be bigger? it is still well over $1,000 that did not exist before. no one will ever be totally
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happy. it is a significant improvement over before -- which was nothing. host: here is this chart about the donut hole -- the actual and projected out of pocket costs for beneficiaries in the gap. how does that work? guest: only 25% donut hole of people hit. if you are in it you are by definition a fairly high cost consumer. one of the things i think has also improved is that most plants are required to have medication therapy management. many senior citizens, my mother, the man on the phone with the disability -- many senior citizens take 10-15 drugs and
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probably should not be. talk to your promises, doctor, and ask. -- talk to your pharmacist and dr. only about 5% of people actually hit the top of the donut hole. congress is talking about closing that donut hole. you can debate that. this is $50 billion per year we did not spend before 2006. my goal in developing it was to help everyone, but primarily poor senior citizens. for them it has been a spectacular benefit. host: this next call is from pennsylvania. caller: i'm a member of the v.a. in am also under medicare. i have two questions. number one, were you with the
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bush administration from its beginning? and if so, why did the cost -- the co-pay for veterans go from $3 and up to $7? bush was inaugurated in january, and the cost of from $3 up to $7 in february. with donald runs fell, wasn't he a ceo of a drug company? and further, who wrote medicare part d? i am sure that the drug companies were very instrumental in writing ala. this is nothing but a great boon for the drug companies.
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guest: doug badger and i were the two major people who put part d together and i was with bush i i the white house, for the first three years as well for the second bush administration -- this is not driven at all by the drug companies. i worked for the drug companies and had respect for the views, but i was never pursued by anyone to be a close friend of the drug companies and still am not. the v.a. it's a wonderful drug program. my father just passed away and he used the v.a. and also medicare part d.
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their 6 million out there who use the v.a. the co-pays going up to $7 was actually passed by congress. they went up by design from a bill that congress passed -- no one from the administration. it is still a heck of a deal. host: the last question for tom scully comes from the republican line. caller: i like to ask mr. scully, the previous caller i think hit the nail on the head -- and a pharmacist in the state of florida. i am a republican. i am soon going to change my political persuasion. in bell law that you and george bush signed in as the drug plan you make it illegal for a bidding process. that is why the democrats did
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not vote for it. i said that is unconscionable when i saw it, for republicans to believe in free enterprise -- medicare part d is astounding to me. you know as well as i do that hospitals have a formulary which goes out to the me-too drugs like the cholesterol-lowering drugs, whoever gives them the best deal, the doctor writes for that particular manufacturers struggle -- why shouldn't that be available to the american people? the republicans signed the bill to make it look good. in the outgoing years that program will be so stunningly expensive that it will be republicans politically can say here is another cost-ineffective government-run program.
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as a pharmacist i believe that americans deserve health care. medication is one of the easiest pro-active ways to reduce medical costs. when you put together a program like this where you're putting in a no-bid contract, the previous caller was right -- big pharma wrote that bill. guest: i think you're just substantively incorrect. the real issue -- the government has 1500 contractors. medicare which are remand for years and worked for for 30 years -- it does not run the medicare program. 15 blue cross plans run it. medicare hands of the checkbook to blue cross the right their checks from the treasury.
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those plans have no money and risk. the government "negotiates" prices which is to say it fixes prices. every doctor gets paid the same for an office visit. in my opinion that creates horrible incentives for volumes. if every provider gets paid the same, that is terrible. medicare part d decide not to put the money of the treasury at risk. . . guest: by any standard, this
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came in roughly a third less than expected. it is exactly contrary to what you said, that it would be a very expensive program. it is tough and confusing and some people obviously are not happy with it, but it has come in way under budget, and it is a model that i hope democrats and republicans look at for making it health care system tightly regulated, more competitively, and not fixing prices -- and not having the government fixed prices. my agency was $800 billion a year and we spent half of the other health care system and when you pay every doctor and hospital the same thing, you distort the whole system. we want a system that is to be like a lead that gives incentives to drive down prices -- that is tightly regulated that disincentives to drive down prices. the costs are way below what was anticipated.
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thank you for being with us. >> on tomorrow's "washington journal," a president discusses a new study showing it increase in world hunger. a blogger will talk about afghanistan and other current events, and the author of "rendezvous with destiny to speak about ronald reagan's presidential campaign. "washington journal," live beginning at 7:00 a.m. on c- span. [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2009] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] >> coming up next on c-span, the center for american progress hosts a conversation about the obama education policy. the u.s. comptroller of the currency talks about banking regulations. and a discussion about the role
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of media and elections. >> american icons, three original documentaries from c- span, knowledge available on dvd -- now available on tdd. c.b. exquisite detail of the supreme court through the eyes of the justices. look at the white house. go into those rarely seen spaces of the white house, america's most famous come, and explores the architecture of one of america's most famous sculptures. it is a three-d d set. order online at -- is a three-dvd said. >> michael bloomberg met with
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arne duncan in washington today to promote the obama administration's program called race to the top at the center for american progress. the center's president is john podesta. this is about one hour. >> welcome, everyone. we are very pleased to have back at the center three people who of been at the forefront of the fight to give every kid in our country a quality education and a chance to succeed. secretary of education arne duncan, mayor of new york city, secretary of education arne duncan, mayor of new york city michael bloomberg and kati haycock president of the education tress. i think the fact that this wednesday before thanksgiving and it is a:00 in the morning and we have the full house and a lot of cameras is either testament to the fact of the timeliness of the quality of this discussion or arne they are
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expecting you to announce the "race to the top" decisions this morning. we are here today to discuss education reform the 21st century and issue that could not be more timely. to keep our global leche in our economy strong the nation needs to get education right. we need to improve our failing schools and close the persistent achievement gaps. we need to prepare all students regardless of their family background for the workplace of the 21st century. that is what these great leaders and their team led by sidney brown have been-- the american recovery act provided an unprecedented amount of discretionary funding targeted for education reform. $4.35 billion in the "race to the top" guns, 650 million for investing in innovation funds, $200 million for the future incentive fund, $250 million the statewide longitudinal data system grants and $3 billion in
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title one improvement grants a total of $8 billion. the "race to the top" program especially for by the educators and policymakers with an unprecedented opportunity for innovation and reform but the program also requires states and cities to make hard decisions and to commit to change. the focus of the department's requirements for the "race to the top" fund parallels the priorities of the center for american progress first and foremost for laser like focus on improving teacher effectiveness through rigorous evaluation systems that link teacher performance to that of their students meaningful tenure processes, pay for performance and initial responsibility support for new teachers and those needing to strengthen their teaching skills and removal of those who did not improve all worked out together with future represented despicably at the center urge break-through is national now called common standards, strong accountability, expanded learning time in community
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schools for most disadvantaged students in greater fairness and distribution of financial and human resources. the issue of innovation in education has long been important to the center. before we got bogged down in this great recession, before there was a "race to the top" we did begin the project with the u.s. chamber of commerce that is looking at this very issue. the project culminated in a state-by-state report card of innovation in the states which were released earlier this month with secretary duncan and we hope we can trigger future state action. what is the unprecedented and encouraging its of the department's discretionary funding is leveraging reform activity in states even before it is awarded. as you know number of states have made changes to state laws to be eligible for "race to the top" funding. i am sure many of the noted the change in california's law prohibiting the linking up teacher student data for evaluation purposes.
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they reverse that and many other states are taking these programs very seriously. indeed there are reports, as many as 30 states plan to apply for "race to the top" funds for the governors are competing working groups in several states including illinois and massachusetts to take action to position their states to be awarded these grants. these funds are beginning to reshape state policy before they even lead the department of education. maybe i should not trumpet that too loudly or congress might decide not to send the money but seriously we encourage more bold efforts by the states and districts because the magnitude of this federal funding opportunities on likely to rise again anytime soon and in many cases the politics of making changes of the status quo will be tough but the carrot of these funding streams will be a powerful lever and it is essential to bring all the stakeholders to the table when designing and advocating for transformative the education system changes.
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just as important as the stimulus dollars for education reform is the weitz reauthorization of elementary and secondary education act a process we hope begins early next year. almost everyone recognizes major improvements are necessary and from the most successful actions and outcomes of state and local efforts with "race to the top" dollars as well as the school innovation and chip programs that are in are. as the preauthorization move forward it should include an approach to accountability ones that set challenges but achievable goals for closing achievement gaps and acknowledges different types and degrees of the inadequate schooling district performance and targets interventions for specifically to meet those needs. the approach to accountability should also prevent widely varying state standards, assessment and accountability measures that reward success. esea teacher quality title needs
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to be improved substantially. in addition in need a new program for middle and high schools to take aggressive steps to prevent dropouts to recapture those that that have left school as well as with students on a faster track to college through early college in dual enrollment. there also needs to be more substantial programming that leads to academic learning time in richmond experience and commit to support for low-income students to get much less than their middle-class peers. this is a big task. much remains to be done and that is why this event brings together some of the nation's reformers to talk about how best to improve our education system and prepare all students for the future. i am very pleased to introduce brief we are three speakers who have agreed to be with us this morning. arne duncan as the secretary of education former superintendent of chicago public schools. he together with president obama is leading an extraordinary effort to transform america's public schools.
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michael bloomberg as mayor of new york city. in 2002 the new york state legislature awarded him control of the city's school system and heal long with chancellor joe klein who is also with us this morning has initiated several major reforms that are paying off for new york students. finally kati haycock is president of the education trust leading advocacy organization on behalf of low-income students and students of color. with the center have teamed up with that trust on several important strategies in closing the shameful achievement gaps. after they speak they will take questions and participate in a panel led by cindy brown earthrise president for education policy. let me thank you colligan for being here this morning and especially to our speakers for agreeing to get up early and come here and address this important topic. secretary duncan let me handed off to you. [applause]
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>> thank you john. i am honored to be here and i want to thank the mayor and kati for their extraordinary leadership. it is a huge opportunity to share this panel with them. many politicians run away from education. they don't do much about it. this is the mayor that ran on education and it's been a relentless to improving the quality of life so thank you for your courage. kati haycock has been a lifetime focused on equity in closing the achievement gap. she is a smart woman in the way we closed the achievement gap is to get great teachers and great principals in front of communities that have been historically underserved. we are seeing now more than ever not just great classrooms but schools that are consistently closing the achievement gap not from one miraculous child and one miraculously year by year after year. she continues to shine a spotlight on what is possible and the myth that poor children
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or children of color so-- can learn so i thank you for your leadership and focus. the challenge we face boils down to a conversation the president had recently on his trip and a ship. he met with the president south korea ann's in what is the biggest challenge to face in education. the president went on and on it his point was the biggest challenge in south korea he said is his parents are too demanding. his parents are asking them to do too much too fast and somehow even the poorest parents expect the best education. every child in the country is learning english in the second grade so the question as a country when the rest of the world is very serious about this and very committed, working very hard, how do we awaken our country to understand how critically important it is for our children to have a chance to compete for all of our children,
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particularly the disadvantaged children to have a world-class education and we have to get to the point where this is really being driven from the ground up. until we get to that day, until we awaken from a point of a complacency and apathy and acceptance of the status quo we have to continue to push very, very hard for change. ..
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of two things. i think the courage and the capacity within the states to deliver dramatically better results for children. so this is less about states looking over their shoulder at what other folks are doing, but really doing a gut check in heart jack to look in themselves to see if they have the ability, the courage, the will power, the staying power to fundamentally do things in dramatic ways at the local level but will lead to dramatically better outcomes for children. two challenges i think in education historically, one is a massive under investment, and while money is never not $100 billion this president and congress has given unprecedented resources coming into education, but the other big thing lacking has been political will, courage and what i called adult
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dysfunction. and part of the recent education is so hard and complicated as in our country is you need education leaders, you need political leaders, you need parents, community support, philanthropic community, business community, nonprofits and social service agencies. you need everybody working on behalf of children and in far too many places adults do to their own ego, silos, agendas, and we want to invest not just in a great ceo, but we want to invest in great management teams, and where we see a minor event and collective courage, where we see a willingness. those are the kinds of places we want to invest in. raising the bar dramatically. much higher standards. a career standards are what we are looking for. secondly, transparency around
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dated. i have talked about of louisiana. -- transparency around data. they attract teachers back to their school of education and back to their alternative certification routes -- they track them. after tens of thousands of teachers, you see them literally changing their curriculum based upon the result of the students, their alumni. louisiana does not have some technology the rest of the country cannot figure out. this is not some technological breakthrough. this is simply having the courage of saying that teaching math nerds and that adults make a difference in their lives -- saying that teaching matters. we can get dramatically better. it is not some miracle of technology that louisiana has patented and will not share with
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the rest of the world. technology that louisianan has patented and will share with the rest of the world, why is it today we only have one state operating in this manner? third, great talent matters. thinking about how we get the best and brightest teachers and principals, the hardest working, the most coveted adults to the children in the communities that have been historic the underserved. and for all of the challenges we face as a country, a job outbreak this devastating, too many graduates are not prepared for colleges. i've never been more hopeful because we've never had more luck symbols of success of schools and school districts beating the odds year after year after year. how are they giving it? bye getting the most talented adults in front of the children who need the most help, and we have to do that systemically, not haphazardly, not by accident. and finally as a country having the courage to fundamentally turnaround chronically underperforming schools. i talked about a drop out rate that's devastating. we have over 100,000 schools and our country.
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only 2,000 high schools, not that many, pretty contained number, 2,000 high schools produce half, 50%, of the nation's dropouts. those 2,000 high schools produce 75% of dropouts from the minority community. our african-american, latino young boys and girls. that is fundamentally unacceptable. and what's heartbreaking to me is in most of those communities that hasn't been true for two years, five, ten, that's been true for decades and we look for incremental change and marginal change. we've not had the political will and courage to do things fundamentally different. so what we want to do is invest unprecedented resources and states and districts and nonprofits and universities plan to raise the bar for students to be transparent and around student achievement to think very differently about how you create real incentives, meaningful incentives to get great talent into underserved communities and willing to change the status quo. where schools, despite the work and best intentions, who will challenge the status quo.
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where the schools are actually in effect perpetuating poverty and social failure. it is an extraordinary opportunity. there's been a lot of focus on the wrist the top that's about $4 billion. but the other discretionary resources. incentive grants, teacher fund, money for education technology. we have more of $10 billion. we've never had this kind of discretionary resources. what i've said repeatedly is for all the challenges as much as we are going to push everybody else, the department of education has been part of the problem. we've been this big compliance in the theocracy and we try to look in the mirror every day and be very self critical and fundamentally change the business we are into being about compliance and audits to be about driving innovation and skilling networks. so just as we push everyone to be hit in different ways, i promise you we challenge ourselves to do things very differently within the building. it is an extraordinary opportunity. john talked about the tremendous movement without spending a donner. i think there's an appetite, there is a willingness now.
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there is a sense of urgency about the country that hasn't existed before and our goal is to capture that and build upon the great leadership at a local level and fundamentally transform education. if we can get a set of states to break through and lead the country where we need to go i think the rest of the country will fall behind that. i look forward to the conversation and it's my honor to introduce the mayor of new york city, mayor bloomberg. [applause] >> thank you, everyone. great to see you. kati, thank you for coming. i'm joined by dennis as well as joe klein, our great chancellor. i'm sure everybody here is thinking about turkey and pumpkin pie. that's fine. tonight i will be watching the balloons be blown up. you can watch on television. it is an incredible experience. i can't imagine this much hot air in one place, although this is washington, so perhaps.
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[laughter] it is always a pleasure to be here in the nation's capital, particularly since this is the only city whose basketball team is doing as badly as new york's. so i feel right at home. i ride the subway every day, and the only time anybody has yelled at me is one time i was getting off a big guy looked at me, glared and screamed fix the nicks. there are some things even mayor can't do. before president obama took office rahm emanuel told us we should quote, never allowed a serious crisis to go to waste. and so the president has not only been working to stabilize the financial community, the financial markets and save the auto industry for immediate collapse. he focused on our long-term economic -- his focus on the long-term economic challenges, including the auto industry's, publics -- the auto industry public sector equivalent, and that is our school system.
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and if you think about it, of the auto industry and our school system were built for another era, and both were very slow to adapt to changing times, and neither can compete in the 21st century without major structural reforms that place consumers at the center of their operations. in the case of our schools, the consumers, not the politicians, not the labor unions and not the ideologues. schools exist to ensure children and learn as much as possible and as well as possible. and for the first time we will say the federal government is telling states through its race to the top program discard policies that impede learning and adopt policies that promote learning or forfeit federal funding. as arne has a number of times the state can't enter "race to the top" if they prohibit students from using data to evaluate teachers and that is why california does repealed its
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prohibition on doing so. in new york state legislature passed a law we last year that actually tells the principles you can evaluate teachers on any criteria you want, just not student achievement data and that's like saying hospitals you can evaluate heart surgeon on any criteria you want just not patient survival rates. you really can't make this up. thankfully the law in new york is set to expire this june, but that is not enough. we will urge the state not just to prohibit but require all districts to create data driven systems to comprehensively evaluate teachers and principals, and we want new york city to lead the way. as it turns out, our lawyers now tell us after a very close reading of the new york law that the current law does not actually stop us from using student data to evaluate teachers up for tenure this particular school year because the wheel was written it covers only teachers hired after july 1st 2008, and those are not up this year. so today i directed the schools chancellor joel klein to ensure
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principles actually use student achievement data to help evaluate teachers up for tenure this year. it is an aggressive policy, but our obligation is to take care of our kids and we will also be creating our own comprehensive evaluation system that includes classroom views and student achievement data and we know great teaching is reflected in more than just test scores but we certainly should never dismiss quantitative data in favor of subjective opinions that fit a predetermined conclusion that might make all of us feel good but a really doesn't help our children. using data to help evaluate teachers and principals will get a state into the race to the top but as the secretary duncan has repeatedly said unless the states take other major steps they are not willing to get very far off the starting line. and for new york city that's worrisome from a short-term budget perspective because in this economic environment we can model afford to leave federal
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money on the table and it's even more worrisome from the long term economic perspective any just as surely as the car companies that set out the race to build affordable hybrids, not to mention shortchanging our kids on the education they need to compete in an increasingly global and technological world. today i just want to take a few minutes to walk you through six of the seven steps new york should take to compete in the race to the top. and the more steps we take a more likely we think we will deal to receive hundreds of millions of dollars in funding that can only go to improve the system. the steps really fall into two broad categories attracting and retaining more great teachers and creating more great schools, and mr. secretary i hope you hold all states accountable for submitting an application that achieves both, the time for excuses is over and this really is our nation's future and is in your hands. we will play our part you can rest assured.
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the evaluation system new york city is going to create lay the foundation including step one paying higher salaries for higher performing teachers and principals and for those with skills in the greatest demand. and new york city the last eight years we have raised teacher salaries by 43 per cent and veteran teachers in new york city and now make more than $100,000 a year. i've always believed if you want the best you've got to pay for it and we really are improving the quality of teaching and new york city. and the quality of those providing the service. we've also adopted you should know a bonus program in partnership with our labor unions that rewards teachers and principals and schools that meet their benchmarks. but sadly like most people new york city has difficulty attracting science and math teachers because they have so many other career options that pay more and also prevented from the highest performing teachers more money. this kind of lockstep pay scale is what you see in factory assembly lines but teachers we
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think are professionals, certified by the state. and we need to pay based on skills, not just seniority, and we will start by demanding the state education department changes the way it awards incentive pay. we want to see that money go where it's needed the most to math, science and special needs teachers and low-income schools who received high ratings on comprehensive evaluations. this would benefit students, schools, teachers and the race to the top application and rest assured we will beat the drum of the public to make sure that this happens. the second reform the new evaluation system would make possible, step number two is ending a layoff policy called last and first out. right now as everybody knows state will typically mandates if the layoffs have to be made the newest teachers are the first to go even if they are among the best teachers. the only thing worse than having to lay off teachers would be lead off great teachers.
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remember the system is supposed to work for, the students, not its employees. with a transparent new evaluation system principles will have the knowledge to make the layoffs based on merit. the ability to do so only if the state legislature gives us the authority to do so and so we will pressure them to get that authority. third, our evaluation system ability to identify the lowest performing teachers, but it's also a key criteria for the race to the top funding. in new york city removing bad teachers from a classroom is extremely difficult, and moving them off the payroll was even harder. when a teacher is removed from the class room for multiple negative reviews or for breaking ball, he or she can go to something known as the rubber room. it is basically a suspension hall for teachers for pay. believe it or not we are still paying teachers in new york city who have been in the rubber room for seven years and counting.
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seven years. this is the public money and this is the money that would otherwise go to pay those teachers who are helping our children. this is an upsurge and outrageous abuse of tenure and we have got to work with a state representative to fix it. but let me be clear we are not proposing the end to tenure. we are only proposing that our state legislatures streamlined process for removing feeling teachers from classrooms and put an end rubber room as we know it. to ensure students have more great teachers and more great schools we are going to take a few more steps. step number four in the list of six is most important and that is raising standards. i believe the federal government should require states to adopt a single national standard for all students and all subjects. but as bill bennett, one of arne's predecessors once told me, the reason we don't have national testing is the conservatives take anything with the word national in it and the liberals hate anything with the work testing. the race to the top very
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pragmatically skirts this ideological divide by incentivizing states to adopt a common core standard and i'm glad to say that new york state signed up to be part of that. when the standards are completed next year there will undoubtedly be pressure to water them down and so today chancellor klein and donna are sending a letter to the state board of regents irving it to ratify the standards without material alterations. in new york city we've built of the reforms around raising standards and holding everyone accountable for the results and that's why our kids have made enormous progress on state exams especially when compared to the rest of the state. the chancellor of the board of regents merrill tisch has been a great champion of raising standards that account for 14% of the state's race to the top application and will give her all the support we can to raise them as high as she can get done. the fifth step we've got to take is lifting restrictions on growth of charter schools. this fall stanford university study should charter school students in


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