Guest opinion: Why conservatives should vote for ColoradoCare
August 6, 2016
This coming November, Coloradans will vote on ColoradoCare, Amendment 69. As I talk with folks about this initiative, people seem to think that liberals will vote "yes" and conservatives will vote "no." I think this is an issue for everyone who cares about people's health and wasting huge amounts of money. I think conservatives should vote "yes."
Many conservatives do care about people's health, but they are rightly concerned about big new government programs that will collect lots of taxes and spend big bucks. We are all leery of government spending and particularly government waste. Since ColoradoCare would collect new taxes of $25 billion per year, it's easy to see why conservatives would be skeptical.
But there are a lot of reasons why ColoradoCare should make sense for conservatives. While we would all be paying $25 billion in taxes, we would all be saving $30 billion in health-care spending. This means the residents and businesses of Colorado end up with $5 billion more in their pockets each year, money that can be used for all sorts of other things. The ColoradoCare plan has been thoroughly analyzed by economists, and the savings are real.
Another strong feature of ColoradoCare is that it is implemented via a constitutional amendment, not created by the Legislature. This means that the special-interest lobbyists can't twist arms in the Legislature to have the program modified for their gain. ColoradoCare cuts out an incredible amount of spending for administrative tasks and insurance company profits, and that's why it is possible to save money while we are covering every Coloradan.
ColoradoCare is a program that collects taxes and pays for every resident's medical care. An independent elected board of directors will oversee its operation. There is no need for any Colorado resident to buy medical insurance ever again.
Rural areas tend to be more conservative, and ColoradoCare includes some terrific benefits for rural communities. Farmers and ranchers are typically self-employed, so they have to fend for themselves when it comes to finding health insurance they can afford. Workers in small towns often don't get any insurance from their employers, so they have the same problem.
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We would all like to have our parents, children and other family members able to get the health care they need without going broke in the process. ColoradoCare covers every resident of Colorado from youngest to oldest, urban and rural.
One more big positive for conservatives: ColoradoCare replaces Obamacare (which doesn't seem to be real popular with conservatives) with a system run by the people of Colorado.
My father retired from the United States Army after 28 years of service as a colonel after seeing combat in World War II and Vietnam. He is quite conservative and generally votes Republican. After retiring from the Army, he went to work as assistant to the dean of the University of Louisville Medical School. He got an inside look at the finances of health care in this country, and he was totally disgusted. He has been a proponent of a ColoradoCare-like system ever since.
So when you vote in November, remember you have two choices: Stick with the status quo, including Obamacare, higher premiums, higher deductibles and never-ending administrative costs, and hope that somebody will do something about it. (How likely is that?) Or vote for ColoradoCare, Amendment 69, and let Colorado lead the way to a sensible, economical, and effective system that covers every resident of Colorado.
If you have questions about ColoradoCare, visit http://www.coloradocare.org. See how it will affect you: http://www.ColoradoCare.org/calculator. After you understand it, please contribute, tell your friends, and vote "yes" for ColoradoCare.
Guinn Unger has been a successful entrepreneur and worked at NASA and in corporate America. He served 28 years in the United States Army Reserves. He lives in Bayfield and is the La Plata County captain for ColoradoCare. Reach him at email@example.com.
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