Senator McCaskill hosts more health care forums this week as a coalition of groups pushes for health-care reform.
Executive Director Amy Blouin with the Missouri Budget Project says some of those forums have drawn vocal protests, because there isn’t any one bill Congress has focused on.
"Everything’s still very fluid," Blouin says, "and, because of that, people really aren’t getting the information about the bills and what the impact could be on them."
The Missouri Budget Project has joined with other groups which favor the Obama Administration’s push for health care reform. Despite the pushback by protestors, Blouin expects reform to pass this year.
"I think there’s a good chance," says Blouin. "I think what the Congress realizes and I’m sure the president realizes is that it is not ok for us to do nothing with this critical issue. We have got to address our health care needs not only for our families, but for our economy as well."
Blouin says proponents of reform need to get out among the public and talk up reform as well as listen to concerns. She won’t criticize the protestors at the forums, stating that one of the things that is exciting about the protests is that people are obviously engaged.
McCaskill has been hosting forums. Some have featured disruptive protests. Today, McCaskill will be in Hannibal, hosting a forum at the Veterans Elementary School. She then will travel to Moberly, where she will host a forum at Moberly Area Community College. Later in the afternoon, McCaskill will host a forum at the University of Missouri-Kansas City. On Wednesday, McCaskill will host forums in Warrensburg and Jefferson City.
The Missouri Budget Project has been joined by Missouri Health Care for All, Missouri Health Advocacy Alliance, Health Care for America Now, Jobs with Justice and Disability Coalition on Healthcare Reform.
The most prominent health care legislation in Congress is HR 3200 which passed the US House Energy and Commerce Committee chaired by Rep. Henry Waxman (D-California) by a vote of 31-28.