Pacific Green Party Announcements
PGP Convention update; Keating challenges Kulongoski to stop National Guard deployments to Iraq; PGP back "All-Oregon Health Plan" so that every Oregonian has access to health care; And much, much more!
PACIFIC GREEN PARTY OF OREGON
Announcements for March 22, 2006
Official results of the PGP primary, as of March 17
By Matt Donohue
Coordinating Committee, Elections Committee, PGP
Here are the final results of the PGP Gubernatorial Nomination Election. The numbers below reflect the ballots cast at the convention and the five valid provisional ballots (one provisional ballot was not valid):
Joe Keating- 25 votes
Ed Winslow-23 votes
None of the Above-1 vote
Joe received 25 of 49 votes cast, so he is declared the winner.
On the endorsements, the final numbers are:
All Oregon Health plan- 44 Endorse, 1 No Endorse
HOPE Initiative-23 Endorse, 8 No Endorse, 2 Oppose
One Ballot Initiative- 3 Endorse, 12 No Endorse, 32 Oppose
[Note: this is the proposal for an open primary, with a run-off of the top two vote getters. JCL]
The initiative final numbers do not equal the 49 total ballots due to under votes.
Keating Challenges Gov. Kulongoski to
Stop Oregon National Guard Deployments to Iraq
News release 3-21
In his first remarks after winning the Pacific Green gubernatorial primary on March 17, Joe Keating called on Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski to end all future deployments of the Oregon National Guard to Iraq.
Governors can veto deployment of the National Guard if the deployment affects a state's basic training responsibility or harms its ability to respond to local emergencies.
"Oregon's top priority should be to build peace here at home, not to fight a war for oil in Iraq," Keating said. "Governor Kulongoski should quit whimpering about attending too many funerals, and be brave enough to stop all future deployments of Oregon National Guard in Iraq."
"Oregon's firefighters, police officers, other emergency responders and equipment are vital to our infrastructure. They should stay here," Keating said.
According to Maj. Gen. Raymond F. Rees, Oregon's Adjutant General, in 2005, Oregon has deployed more troops to Iraq, Afghanistan, and Guantanamo Bay, Cuba than it has since World War II. Rees also noted in the Oregonian that there has been a significant toll on the Guard's equipment. For example, Rees said, "... the Guard at one time had 3,000 M-4 carbines --the main weapon for infantry soldiers. However, based on orders that it must leave its equipment with other Army units in Iraq, the Oregon Guard is now down to 600 M-4 rifles, making it difficult to keep the force trained and up to date."
After Keating graduated from Georgetown University in 1964, he served as a second lieutenant in the United States Army until 1966. He served as a captain from 1971 to 1973. Between his tours of duty, he worked in New York as an investment banker for the Wall Street firm of Thomson & McKinnon. Since moving to Oregon in 1988, Keating has worked as the operations director and action coordinator for Oregon Greenpeace, director of United Community Action, KBOO station manager and chair of the Oregon Sierra Club. He is currently a director of the Oregon Wildlife Federation.
As a candidate for governor, Keating will advocate for building peace, protecting our environment, and providing financial solutions to our health care and education crises.
All-Oregon Health Plan proposal
By Teresa Keane
Anyone who is paying attention realizes that the American healthcare system is badly broken. Approximately 45 million Americans have no healthcare, and the ranks of the uninsured are growing every year. Here in America, we tie healthcare to employment. We are the only democracy with such a system. As people lose jobs and healthcare, the costs are shifted to the backs of the insured. That is why our costs increase every year. The HMOs do not absorb the costs; the citizens do.
Several health plans are being proposed. John Kitzhaber wants to expand the Oregon Health Plan idea for all Oregonians. While we respect his efforts, this plan does not go far enough. OHP is rock bottom care. I don't know a single employed person who would trade their current healthcare for OHP coverage. Therefore it is not good enough. The solution is not to give inferior care to the poor and uninsured. We must guarantee good basic comprehensive care to all Oregonians.
Bush wants to increase "Health Savings Accounts." This is nothing more than a smoke screen that gives fees to banks and leaves the poor uninsured. Think Bush's new prescription drug plan; it was written by his corporate friends. The plan is a nightmare that decreases our senior citizens' access to much needed medications.
The good news is we don't need to reinvent the wheel. We have several examples of comprehensive healthcare plans from every other democratic government. They ALL provide healthcare to their citizens. The Pacific Green Party is proposing a model loosely based on the system in Holland, a public/private model that fits with our capitalistic system.
In the PGP model, basic healthcare is provided to ALL Oregonians. This basic system includes comprehensive care: medical, vision, dental and mental health services. This system will not be tied to employment. Each person will choose a primary care provider who can be an MD, an NP or a Naturopath. All licensed professionals will be included as eligible providers. The primary care provider will act as the gatekeeper for referrals to specialists.
Supplemental private insurance based on a free market system will also be available. Individuals and businesses can add on insurance from a variety of private resources with various plans as an addition to, not instead of, the basic plan.
Hospitalization coverage is as follows: The plan will cover 100% of a semi-private room, less a co-pay starting at $5 per day increasing to $25 per day based upon ability to pay.
Funding will come from the following sources: federal funds (Medicaid and Medicare, 85%), business taxes (payroll tax 5%), a progressive income tax (5%) and co-payments for services (5%). A tax on cigarettes of $2 will be added. These financial sources will be adjusted as needed to cover the cost of services. Other taxes on things that impair health, like soda and junk food, can be considered.
The State of Oregon will contract with the pharmaceutical companies for the lowest possible prices. All drugs will be put into a tiered system based on cost and coverage. The first tier will be generic low-cost proven-effective drugs or brand named drugs with no generic equal. These drugs will be covered 100% less co-pays based upon a minimal co-pay of $2 per prescription up to a maximum of $10. The second tier will be more expensive generic drugs or comparable brand-name drugs. Co-pays will increase to a minimum of $3 per prescription to a maximum of $20. Brand-name drugs will be in the third tier. These drugs will be covered on a exception only basis.
The plan will be managed by a group of interested parties, including unions, employers, providers, citizen organizations and patient advocates. This is a single-payer system with targeted administrative costs at 4% of premiums.
In summary, tying healthcare to employment is a failed model. As people are unemployed and employers fail to provide coverage, the cost of healthcare is shifted onto the backs of those with insurance. Instead, we need to select a time-tested model from those that exist. This plan models the system in Holland that was voted the best in the EU. It provides good healthcare to all, regardless of employment. In addition private insurance is available to those who want to purchase it.
Now we need leaders with the courage to tackle the problem and implement solutions.
Help update the PGP platform
The Pacific Green Party platform committee is beginning work on revising our platform, which has not been updated since 2000. Our platform is a central document expressing to the world the policies we would like to see enacted. If you would like to be involved in this discussion, please join the pgp-legislate email list:
We hope to have the platform ready for ratification at the next state
convention this summer. Time for discussion will be limited at the
convention. If you have opinions, NOW is the time to get involved.
Assistant Professor of Computer Science
Lewis & Clark College
Help support Xander's campaign for Multnomah County Commissioner
If you live in Alexander Patterson's district (north of I-84 from the Willamette to I-205) please contact his campaign to get a lawn sign. If you have friends in the district, ask them to put out a lawn sign. In a race like this where name recognition is everything, his beautiful signs are making a huge impression, especially since they are the only ones out there. Now when Xander goes canvassing most people have noticed the signs and are very curious to meet him. No matter where you live, please donate to his campaign. This is a high office, and we have a real chance at winning.
Vote Xander Patterson For County Commissioner
PO Box 11702 Portland, OR 97211
Support the environment and have a darn good time doing it!
Oregon Stage Works is generously supporting Headwaters' environmental work in the Valley by donating tickets to their opening night of Crossing Delancey on March 24th at 8 p.m. Crossing Delancey is a sentimental, character-driven romantic comedy and popular 1988 movie about a New York City Jewish woman who must choose between suitors and cultures.
This production will be put on by Michael Mish, a very talented director and avid environmentalist. The Los Angeles Times has called him "The Pied Piper of the Environment."
Tickets will be on sale for $5-$15 (sliding scale). Please purchase tickets through Headwaters at 541-482-4459, firstname.lastname@example.org or come by the office at 84 4th St. [Ashland?] weekdays between 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
See you at the show!
Language and words are, thus, either the cogs that reinforce the wheels of tyranny or the only defense against the consolidation of absolute power.
--Chris Henry, Co-Chair, Media Coordinator, PGP
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