Democrats are failing on health care, too | Readers respond

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Dems failing on health care, too

As a proud liberal and long time Democrat, I’ve become angry at my party’s leadership in the health-care debate. The Republicans’ legislative debacle has created an opportunity that the Democrats have squandered. Where is their proposal to fix Obamacare? Why aren’t Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi on the Sunday morning news shows advocating for the party’s solution?

When the Senate GOP leaders went into seclusion to craft the horrible plan to replace the Affordable Care Act, congressional Democrats should have done the same thing to create an alternative plan. We can’t just stand in opposition but need to make our agenda clear. If we want to win over voters in 2018 and 2020, we need to clearly articulate our specific ideas to deal with the issues that the majority of Americans care about most — beginning with health care.

These proposals also need to offer compromise. Let’s make it clear what we’re for and that we intend to reach across the aisle to solve the big problems.

Joseph Goldberg, Abington

Bolster Community Health Centers

Last week, we watched the effort to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act fall short of the support needed in the Senate (“Trump: Try again, harder,” Thursday). Those efforts are now at a standstill. Why? Because people of all political leanings understand that millions of Americans losing health care isn’t good strategy.

We can be healthy and financially prudent. We need a system that pays for prevention to avoid more costly treatments down the road, and we need to integrate mental health care with physical care. The opioid epidemic shows what happens when depression, anxiety, and addiction are left undiagnosed and untreated.

Moreover, we must support cost-effective Community Health Centers. Twenty-four million people nationally receive their health care at a center such as La Comunidad Hispana in Southern Chester County. LCH provides integrated physical and mental-health services to individuals with no insurance or Medicaid, which many providers do not accept.

Strengthening community centers is one way to meet the needs of patients and taxpayers who worry about the Affordable Care Act’s long-term financial viability.

Alisa Maria Jones, president and CEO, La Comunidad Hispana, Kennett Square,

Give Trump his due

The Trump bashers never let up, and they find a way to demean/deny/underplay/ignore his accomplishments on a daily basis, thanks to the complicit mainstream media. As a Donald J. Trump supporter, I find it offensive, hypocritical, insulting and anti-American. Fair criticism of a president’s errors in judgment is acceptable. Praise for his successes would be a most-welcome change.

Phyllis Bove, Blue Bell

Christie harms environment

For the last time, Gov. Christie has vetoed the bill that would put New Jersey back into the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI). New Jersey was the only state out of 10 that pulled out.
This action not only hurts state residents but gives a big tax break to polluters, such as Public Service Electric and Gas’ Ridgefield Generating Station, that would save $4 million a year. If we were still in RGGI, that money would go to energy efficiency and renewable energy.

While the other states were seeing $1.3 billion in benefits from RGGI, we’ve lost out. When we were a member, RGGI reduced greenhouse gas emissions by almost 20 million tons and created 1,800 green jobs in the state. The money collected from RGGI helped environmental programs, expanded renewable energy, created jobs, reduced greenhouse gases, and saved middle-class families money on their electric bills.

President Trump is learning from Christie with his war on the environment. However, all the major candidates to be the next governor have committed to putting us back into RGGI.

Jeff Tittel, director, New Jersey Sierra Club, Trenton

Summer fun at the lake

I loved our family day trips in the mid-1960s to Pine Lake in New Jersey (“In the swim, old style,” July 16). As soon as our car came to a stop in the parking lot, my friend and I would barrel out of the car with black tire tubes in hand to jump in the cedar water (which was the same color as my mom’s homemade iced tea).

My parents would set up their picnic area while we climbed the rungs of the huge metal slide to scream our way down into the water. We’d tube around the lake while the loudspeaker played the hits of the Four Tops, Supremes, Temptations, etc., and there we were — floating, laughing, and singing out loud.

Where was Pine Lake located in New Jersey? At the current age of 61, I couldn’t tell you. All I know is that when I was there, there was nowhere else I’d rather be.

Nancy Dreher, Philadelphia

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