Friday, August 21, 2009

Health Care, everyone's talk'n 'bout it!

I don't want to get too political in my blog, unless I deemed a certain topic really necessary for me to voice my opinions. But I did just send an email to my Congressman, Jeff Flake, asking him to vote against the Health Care Reform Bill, and I thought that some of you might find his response interesting. So, here it is:

Dear Crystal,

Thank you for contacting me about universal healthcare.

The rising cost of healthcare is truly a major problem. As you know, over 45 million Americans are either unable to acquire health insurance on their own or simply choose not to have coverage.

I believe that all Americans should have access to affordable healthcare, and the federal government can achieve this by making the market as open as possible and encouraging health insurance companies to offer a wide variety of plans that cover a wide variety of health conditions. The key to meaningful reform is not more government intervention, but rather to allow the free market to control costs and improve quality through choice and competition.

For those truly unable to acquire health insurance, government programs like Medicaid and welfare are available to qualifying individuals. Medicaid is ahealth insurance program jointly funded by both the states and the federal government. The United States welfare program provides assistance to qualified low-income individuals and families.

Waste, fraud, and abuse are prevalent in government programs, and we owe it to all taxpayers to ensure that only those who truly need assistance are the ones receiving it. Expanding the government's role in healthcare will not create access to affordable healthcare but, as we have seen in other countries that have nationalized their healthcare systems, will only create delays, rationing, and increased overall costs. Instead, a free market system will lower costs, encourage innovation, and empower individuals.

I believe that Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) are a successful example of the free market system encouraging individuals to obtain health insurance and control where their health care dollars are spent. Millions of Americans are now taking advantage of HSAs, which allow pre-tax dollars to be used for health care expenditures. I support the expansion of HSAs, so that more Americans will have the freedom to determine the direction of their health care dollars.

Thank you again for contacting me. Please do not hesitate to do so again in the future. I also encourage you to visit my website, which may be found at

JEFF FLAKE Member of Congress