November 6, 2018
Congressional candidates talk health policy at MATTER
It’s election day! Leading up to the 2018 midterm elections, MATTER — together with the Health Care Council of Chicago and iBIO — invited congressional representatives and major-party candidates to MATTER to talk health policy with our community. Here are some of our favorite quotes from those who accepted the invitation to join us.
Congresswoman Robin Kelly (D-IL, 2nd District)
“Since [the Affordable Care Act’s] implementation, I believe we’ve been asked to vote about 63 times to repeal it. We’ve never been given the opportunity to correct what needs to be corrected.
“I will tell you that healthcare is the number one issue for these elections coming up. I know on our side of the aisle, people are already meeting just in case there is the blue wave so that we can hit the ground running with healthcare.”
Congressman Mike Quigley (D-IL, 5th District)
“We’re as polarized as I’ve ever seen us. I don’t see people talking about policy, and I don’t see people talking about politics in a healing mode … I often think about Lincoln at Gettysburg talking about a new birth of freedom. I think his main point in that speech was that 87 years ago we formed a country where we talked about all of us being created equal: Did we really mean it? And in the second inaugural, he talked about the extraordinary battle we’re going through — a battle about who we are. But instead of striking out the entire speech in anger, he said, ‘with malice toward none, with charity toward all.’ Why do I say all these things to you now? Because whether we’re talking about healthcare, immigration, gun violence or foreign policy, I need folks to hear healing voices.”
Congressman Peter Roskam (R-IL, 6th District)
“As a country, we’re stuck in our discussion about healthcare. We’re not necessarily nostalgic to go back to before the ACA, but where we are now we feel very unsettled. The big question is: Where are we going? The problem politically is that if you ask a member of Congress what their view is on the ACA, you get to this discussion on the ACA that immediately divides. You’ve got two teams and they’re talking right past each other.”
Congressional Candidate Sean Casten (D-IL, 6th District)
“There are so many people standing up right now and saying: This is the time to become politically engaged. It’s something to be optimistic about.”
Congressman Raja Krishnamoorthi (D-IL, 8th District)
“There is so much uncertainty about the healthcare landscape. The only thing I know for sure is that there are elections in November and I think the outcome of those elections will give you a little more certainty as to what the agenda will be in Congress.”
Congressman Brad Schneider (D-IL, 10th District)
“If I came up with a perfect solution today, a year from now it would be obsolete and we would need to refine it. Not just in my political career but in all our lifetimes, we’re never going to be done with figuring out how to deliver healthcare in this country.
“My hope is that as we can reform the process to get to ‘regular order,’ we can have the discussion: ‘That didn’t work the way we intended — let’s change it.’ But in politics [today], we don’t allow for trial and error.”
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