During an appearance in eastern Iowa yesterday, democratic presidential candidate John Kerry sandwiched talk about his domestic agenda between his comments about Iraq. Three Tipton residents spoke to Kerry and the crowd gathered in a school gym. All three focused on their concerns about skyrocketing health care costs. Kerry touted his own plan which would let Americans buy the same insurance plan members of Congress have, a move Kerry believes would force private-sector insurance companies to hold the line on premium increases in order to compete. “I’m really so excited about it that I personally think that this alone is a reason to vote for John Kerry for President,” Kerry said. “It’s going to change the economy and health care and the way you live and your quality of life because I have a plan for health care.” Kerry accused President Bush of “spending millions of dollars” spreading lies about the plan. Kerry said Bush is “trying to scare” the American people into believing something that isn’t true. Kerry said he respected the Clintons for trying to reform the nation’s health care system in 1993 and ’94, but Kerry said “the truth is” he didn’t agree with their plan. And Kerry said the plan he has outlined will not force Americans to do anything.”If you like your great big, high, whoppin’ premiums, you go ahead and keep ’em. Your choice,” Kerry said. “If you like having an insurance agent make a decision about your medical life instead of a doctor and you — the patient — you go ahead and keep that system. I’m just going to offer you an alternative.” Kerry promises to ensure that all American children have health insurance. And Kerry promises to make stop-gap insurance for those between jobs more affordable, as he says such “Cobra” policies today are so expensive many 40- and 50-year-olds who lose their jobs go without insurance.
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