These people are insane. If anything proves that they're not coming to this summit in good faith, it's what Eric Cantor (R-Oblivious) just said. He claims that we can all "read letters by constituents who are allegedly wronged by our health care system."
I can't even tell you how much arrogance it must have taken to say that. If there's any justice in this world, that quote will be used in ads to take down these people in 2010 and 2012.
It's as if Cantor doesn't even believe his constituents who tell him they're wronged by their health insurance companies. Not only that, but it's bafflingly fucking strange that he would say that they can all point to constituents complaints to justify government action. That is their JOB. They're SUPPOSED to do what their constituents want!
(h/t Jed Lewison, who is AWESOME)
This one quote tells everyone that they are not being listened to. Their complaints are merely alleged and their real life troubles are nothing more than props. The real suffering they deal with every day, the pain, the bankruptcy, the loss of money, sometimes even the onset of health problems due to inability to afford insurance in the first place, those are merely alleged.
They MIGHT be true.
Screwing over everyone with pre-existing conditions, everyone who has had acne, people who have been raped. All pre-existing conditions. You can be denied insurance for this.
Then there's the billion dollars of "alleged" profits the health insurance industry rakes in. Along with the millions of dollars of "alleged" lobbying that insurance does in Congress to make sure the American people are "allegedly" screwed over. There's the "alleged" eight health insurance lobbyists for every member of Congress.
Then I guess you have the "alleged" poor people who are currently unable to afford insurance. And you have the "alleged" employers who refuse to pay it.
These constituents with their "alleged" debt-inducing medical bills they'll never pay off before they die, they're just not that important.
Apparently though, Cantor and the Republicans take the alleged hurt to the health insurance industry a lot more seriously. They don't use words like "alleged" when referring to possible loss of profits. They didn't use words like "alleged" back when they were discussing a public option and how it would kill private industry. They didn't say "alleged" death panels.
No, those are all real.
The only "alleged" complaints are those of real Americans.
The number is 202-225-2815. (h/t yawnimawke)
Letters to the Editor. By zipcode. With samples.
Media Links on Daily Kos
UPDATE 3: TPM picks this up. (Admittedly they picked it up 'cuz I emailed it to them but I wanted this to get wider circulation.)
UPDATE 4: Also Congress.org has picked it up.
UPDATE 5: Full quote:
CANTOR: Well, actually, Mr. President, this is the Senate bill, along with the 11-page proposal that you put up online that really I think is the basis for the discussion here.
So -- but I do want to go back to your suggestion as to why we're here. And you suggested that maybe we are here to find some points of agreement to bridge the gap in our differences. And I do like -- to go back to basics, we're here because we Republicans care about health care just as the Democrats in this room.
And when the speaker cites her letters from the folks in Michigan and the leader talks about the letters he's received, Mr. Andrews his, all of us share the concerns when people are allegedly wronged in our health care system.
I mean, I think that is sort of a given.
UPDATE 6: Sum of Change blog has it.